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The digit ratio (2D:4D) and economic preferences: no robust associations in a sample of 330 women

Authors Elle Parslow
Eva Ranehill
Niklas Zethraeus
Liselott Blomberg
Bo von Schoultz
Angelica Lindén Hirschberg
Magnus Johannesson
Anna Dreber
Publisher University of Gothenburg
Place of publication Gothenburg
Publication year 2019
Published at Department of Economics
Language en
Keywords economic preferences, experiment, testosterone
Subject categories Economics


Many studies report on the association between 2D:4D, a putative marker for prenatal testosterone exposure, and economic preferences. However, most of these studies have limited sample sizes and test multiple hypotheses (without preregistration). In this study we mainly replicate the common specifications found in the literature for the association between the 2D:4D ratio and risk taking, the willingness to compete, and dictator game giving separately. In a sample of 330 women we find no robust associations between any of these economic preferences and 2D:4D. We find no evidence of an effect for sixteen of the eighteen total regressions we run. The two regression specifications which are significant have not previously been reported and the associations are not in the expected direction, and therefore they are unlikely to represent a real effect.

Page Manager: Webmaster|Last update: 9/11/2012

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