Does board gender diversity affect corporate cash holdings?

Muhammad Atif*, Benjamin Liu, Allen Huang

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

1 Citation (Scopus)


This paper examines whether board gender diversity affects corporate cash holdings using S&P 1500 index firms in the US for the period 2006–2015. We document a significantly negative relationship between board gender diversity and cash holdings. We also find a strong negative effect of female independent directors consistent with monitoring function. Moreover, in accordance with the critical mass theory, we find a negative effect of female directors’ presence and voice on cash holdings. Our findings are robust to alternative econometric specifications, alternative measures of cash holdings and corporate governance, difference-in-differences, propensity score matching, and two-stage least squares. This study offers useful insights into the current global debate on gender diversity and its implications for firms.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1003-1029
Number of pages27
JournalJournal of Business Finance and Accounting
Issue number7-8
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2019
Externally publishedYes


  • cash holdings
  • corporate governance
  • gender diversity

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