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Business ownership and attitudes towards risk

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We explore the relationship between business ownership and attitudes towards financial risk using individual level data drawn from the US Survey of Consumer Finances (SCF). The SCF includes a measure of individuals’ attitudes towards risk allowing us to explore the implications of interpersonal differences in risk attitudes for the probability and success of business ownership. Our empirical findings suggest that willingness to take financial risk is positively associated with both the incidence and success of business ownership. We find that this relationship is particularly pronounced in cases where the individual actually started the business.

Keywords: J20; J21; J23; J24; business ownership; risk attitudes; self-employment

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: 1: Department of Economics,University of Sheffield, 9 Mappin StreetSheffield S1 4DT, UK 2: Centre for Health Economics, University of York, York YO10 5DD, UK

Publication date: May 1, 2013

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