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About Me

I am a Ph.D. candidate in Finance at The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology (HKUST) Business School. I am on the 2021–2022 job market and expect to graduate in summer of 2022.


Working Papers

Know Thyself: Access to Own Credit Report and The Retail Mortgage Market [Job Market Paper]

Abstract
Borrowers may misestimate their probability of mortgage approval in the absence of precise signals of creditworthiness. Credit reports, which contain such signals, became easily accessible for all U.S. consumers since 2005, while it was already the case in seven states. A difference-in-differences strategy exploiting this change shows that pool quality of mortgage applicants improved as a result—approvals increased and subsequent delinquencies decreased. These findings are consistent with a mechanism where under-estimators enter the applicant pool and over-estimators drop out, because easier access to credit reports reduces misestimation of one’s own probability of mortgage approval. Additional findings rule out supply-driven explanations.

Selected Presentations: University of Texas Austin Ph.D. Student Symposium 2020, AFA Ph.D. Poster Session 2021, ABFER 2021, FMA Annual Meeting 2021 and 2020 Doctoral Consortium, AREUEA National Conference 2021, AFBC 2020.

Coverage: The World Bank’s All About Finance Blog

Best Ph.D. Disseration Awards: 15th Conference on Asia-Pacific Financial Markets, 11th Financial Markets and Corporate Governance Conference.


Do Women Receive Worse Financial Advice [Joint with Utpal Bhattacharya, Sujata Visaria, and Jing Zhao]

Revise and Resubmit at The Journal of Finance

Abstract
Trained undercover men and women posed as potential clients and visited all 65 local financial advisory firms in Hong Kong. We find that women are more likely than men to receive advice to buy only individual or only local securities. This effect is significant for financial planners, but not for securities firms. Women who signal that they are highly confident, highly risk tolerant, or have a domestic outlook, are especially likely to receive suboptimal advice. Our theoretical model interprets these patterns as an interaction between statistical discrimination and advisors’ incentives. Taste-based discrimination is unlikely to explain the results.

Coverage: Bloomberg


Polluted Waters and Municipal Finance [Joint with Daisy Huang]

Abstract
We show that pollution increases the offering yields of municipal bonds, indicating increased risk. We establish this using a difference-in-differences design, comparing the bonds from U.S. counties revealed to contain per- and poly-fluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) in their drinking-water supplies with the bonds from neighboring, unpolluted, same-state counties. The increase was greater for riskier bonds characterized by repayment obligation, ex-ante debt burden, unrated issuance, maturity, and bankruptcy access. The resulting pollution-related investment needs and a reduction in public sector employment and expenditure likely underlie the risk. An instrumental variable-like method utilizing airports as a potential contamination source reaffirms the causal interpretation.

Research Grant

HKUST Office of the Vice President for Research and Development Grant for the project entitled, “How does on-campus residence shapes students? An empirical investigation with lessons for programme design” [Team grant, with Kevin Tam and Sujata Visaria]


Academic Awards and Fellowships

  • Junior Scholars Program, AREUEA 2021.
  • Doctoral Travel Grant, AFA 2020.
  • Hong Kong Ph.D. fellowship scheme, Research Grant Council 2017–2020.
  • Gold Medal for Best All-Round Performance, Indian Institute of Management Tiruchirappalli 2015.


References

Prof. Utpal Bhattacharya (Ph.D. Advisor)
Prof. Abhiroop Mukherjee
Chair Professor
Liwei Huang Associate Professor of Business
Finance Department, HKUST
Finance Department, HKUST
✉ ubhattac@ust.hk
✉ amukherjee@ust.hk

 

Prof. Sujata Visaria
Prof. Alminas Žaldokas
Associate Professor
Associate Professor and Lee Heng Fellow
Economics Department, HKUST
Finance Department, HKUST
✉ svisaria@ust.hk
✉ alminas@ust.hk