Behavioral Corporate Finance: An Updated Survey
We survey the theory and evidence of behavioral corporate finance, which generally takes one of two approaches. The market timing and catering approach views managerial financing and investment decisions as rational managerial responses to securities mispricing. The managerial biases approach studies the direct effects of managers' biases and nonstandard preferences on their decisions. We review relevant psychology, economic theory and predictions, empirical challenges, empirical evidence, new directions such as behavioral signaling, and open questions.
This survey updates and extends a survey coauthored with Rick Ruback that was published in the Handbook in Corporate Finance: Empirical Corporate Finance, edited by Espen Eckbo, in 2007. We thank him for his many contributions that carried over to this version, and we thank Milt Harris for extensive and helpful comments. Baker gratefully acknowledges financial support from the Division of Research of the Harvard Business School. Malcolm Baker serve as a compensated consultant for Acadian Asset Management, a global equity manager and a director for TAL, a publicly traded lessor of containers and chassis. The views expressed herein are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Bureau of Economic Research.
Baker, Malcolm, and Jeffrey Wurgler. "Behavioral Corporate Finance: A Current Survey." In Handbook of the Economics of Finance. Vol. 2, edited by George M. Constantinides, Milton Harris, and Rene M. Stulz. Handbooks in Economics. New York, NY: Elsevier, 2012.