Cultural Perspectives on Financial Decisions
Guest-Editors: Panagiotis E. Petrakis (National and Kapodistrian University of Athens), and
Pantelis C. Kostis (National and Kapodistrian University of Athens)
From the late 20th century, theories based on cultural background were gradually starting to appear attempting to interpret the repercussions of the differences between cultural background and the economics of development (Hofstede & Bond, 1991). Recently, economic literature provides clear evidence that culture can be seen as a powerful force shaping human economic behavior (Throsby, 2001; de Jong, 2009). The terms culture and cultural background reflect the behavior of the individual. The way that an individual behaves, perceives, and reacts depends on the architecture of the human mind and body, which is shaped over the millennia by organic evolution. Therefore, culture can be considered an aspect of human biology, as well as an important factor in shaping the way people think and function (Boyd & Richerson, 2005). Human action is the result of human behavior and both are related to decision making. Moreover, decision making analysis requires understanding of the role of cultural background.
Thus, the role of cultural background in understanding financial decision making is essential. Culture influences financial decision-making through beliefs that influence investors’ perceptions, preferences, and behaviors (Guiso et al., 2008, 2013) or by influencing national institutions (Stulz & Williamson, 2003). Traditional finance theories explain the different behaviors of the markets in terms of the rationality of the investors. However, based on psychological or sociological reasons, investors do not behave in a fully rational way, which leads to the appearance of various "abnormalities" in the markets. Taking into account the role of cultural background is of great significance in order to better understand the market behavior and in order to eliminate (or reduce) the presence of these "abnormalities" in the markets and to improve the market efficiency. The use of cultural perspectives, does not change the approach of studying market efficiency but adds data from psychology, sociology and other social sciences. In that way, cultural perspectives can provide an explanation for the internationally divergent behavior in financial practices.
The aim of this JBAFP Special Issue is to add on how culture affects the economic behavior of individuals (Guiso et al., 2008, 2013), firms (Li et al., 2013) and economies (Aggarwal & Goodell, 2009), related to financial decisions. More precisely, the aim is to highlight scientific research on human and social cognitive and emotional bias in order to understand how financial decisions are made, as well as to develop a better understanding of the role of culture in various aspects of financial theory and practice. Thus, we invite authors to submit empirical evidence, that uses rigorous quantitative or qualitative methods, or high-quality theoretical evidence, through conceptual papers that explore different theoretical perspectives, that contribute to this field of research. Although all related topics are of interest, some recommended topics are listed below:
- Key relationships between cultural background and financial decision making;
- Cultural differences and business/financial decisions;
- Financial decision making under uncertainty and uncertainty avoidance behavior;
- Financial behavior in times of crisis;
- Culture and cash holdings;
- Culture and dividend policy;
- Culture and capital structure;
- Culture and corporate investment;
- Behavioral finance and investment decisions;
- Cultural background, credit demand and investments;
- The role of trust in financial decisions;
- Loss aversion and financial decisions;
- Culture and investment diversification;
- Culture, financial institutions and economic growth.
Aggarwal, R., Goodell, J.W. (2009). Markets and institutions in financial intermediation: national characteristics as determinants, Journal of Banking & Finance, 33 (10), pp. 1770-1780
Boyd, R., & Richerson, P. J. (2005). The Origin and Evolution of Cultures. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
de Jong, E. (2009). Culture and Economics: On Values, Economics and International Business, Book
Routledge, London and New York, ISBN: 9780415438612.
Guiso, L., Sapienza, P., & Zingales, L. (2008). Trusting the stock market, The Journal of Finance, 63(6), 2557-2600.
Guiso, L., Sapienza, P., & Zingales, L. (2013). The determinants of attitudes towards strategic default on mortgages, The Journal of Finance, 68, 1473-1515.
Hofstede, G., & Bond, H. (1991). Cultural roots of economic performance: A research note. Strategic Management Journal, 12, 165–173.
Li, K., Griffin, D., Yue, H., & Zhao, L. (2013). How does culture influence corporate risk-taking?
Journal of Corporate Finance, 23, 1-22.
Stulz, R., Williamson, R. (2003). Culture, openness, and finance, Journal of Financial Economics, 70, 313-349.
Throsby, D. (2001). Economics and Culture, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.