Date of Award

Summer 8-15-2019

Author's School

Graduate School of Arts and Sciences

Author's Department

Business Administration

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Degree Type



This dissertation examines how experiences of peer entities affect financial behavior and investor choices. The first chapter studies the effect of peer financial distress on individual borrowing behavior and documents that peer distress leads to a decline in individual leverage and debt as individuals update their beliefs and preferences following peers' experiences. The second chapter finds that firm risk increases following directors' corporate bankruptcy experience at other firms where they're also directors at. This increase is concentrated among less costly bankruptcies suggesting that directors update their beliefs about costs of experiencing distress downwards following bankruptcy experience with other firms. The final chapter examines the effect of listing of options on industry peer stocks on information acquisition and firm value. This chapter finds that information acquisition declines following listing of options on peer stocks as information intermediaries reallocate resources to acquire more information on newly listed stocks at the expense of other stocks. This decline in information acquisition reduces stock price informativeness and firm value.


English (en)

Chair and Committee

Radhakrishnan Gopalan

Committee Members

Todd A. Gormley, Barton H. Hamilton, Mark Leary, Asaf Manela,


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Available for download on Tuesday, August 15, 2119