What’s in an education? Implications of CEO education for bank performance

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Exploiting a unique hand-built dataset, this paper finds that CEO educational attainment, both level and quality, matters for bank performance. We offer robust evidence that banks led by CEOs with MBAs outperform their peers. Such CEOs improve performance when compensation structures are geared towards greater risk-taking incentives, and when banks follow riskier or more innovative business models. Our findings suggest that management education delivers skills enabling CEOs to manage increasingly larger and complex banking firms and achieve successful performance outcomes.


  • CEO education, CEO compensation, Banks, Bank performance
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)287-308
JournalJournal of Corporate Finance
Issue numberApril
Early online date15 Jan 2016
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2016

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