Theses and Dissertations

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Business Administration

First Advisor

Dr. James Boudreau

Second Advisor

Dr. Andre Mollick

Third Advisor

Dr. Marie Mora


Individuals make financial decisions daily, yet the literature on the mechanisms that drive financial decisions is limited. This dissertation looks to examine how physical characteristics, and personality subconsciously influence financial decision making by conducting an experiment. Furthermore, this dissertation examines biased decision making in the betting market by using data from First, this dissertation finds that the cognitive impairments associated with having a higher body mass index is positively related to poor financial decision making and being more likely to commit the present bias, and distorting probabilities. Second, this dissertation finds that business students are more apt to fit the prototypical psychopath compared to non-business students. The higher scores of psychopathy in business students help explain why they are more likely to deceive others. Finally, this dissertation finds that bettors make biased decisions and are more likely to bet on the favorite team and the over. Furthermore, bettors are biased by betting against line movement and preferring teams with the hot hand. The results show that these biased decisions cause bettors to lose more money as the sportsbook takes advantage of the biased decisions.


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