University of Texas at Austin
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Texas Finance Festival

McCombs School of Business McCombs School of Business

The 21st Annual Texas Finance Festival

The Conference That Gives a Real Texas Experience  |  Austin, Texas  |  April 25-27, 2019
Sponsored by the Department of Finance at The University of Texas at Austin and the Review of Financial Studies (RFS).

Selected Papers >

Selected Papers

“Countercyclical Labor Income Risk and Portfolio Choices over the Life Cycle" 
by Sylvain Catherine

"Human Capitalists"
by Andrea Eisfeldt, Antonio Falato, and Mindy Xiaolan

"The Ostrich in Us: Selective Attention to Personal Finances" 
by Michaela Pagel and Arna Olafsson

"No Job, No Money, No Refi: Frictions to Refinancing in a Recession" 
by Anthony DeFusco, and John Mondragon

"Risk Free Interest Rates"  
by Jules van Binsbergen, William Diamond, and Marco Grotteriaat

"Too Much Skin in the Game? The Effect of Mortgage Market Concentration on Credit and House Prices"
by Deeksha Gupta

"Entrepreneurial Spillovers from Corporate R&D" 
by Tania Babina and Sabrina Howell 

"A Day Late and a Dollar Short: Liquidity and Household Formation Among Student Borrowers" 
by Sarena Goodman, Adam Isen, and Constantine Yannelis

"How Do Consumers Fare When Dealing With Debt Collectors? Evidence from out-of-court settlements"
by Ing Haw Chang, Felipe Severino and Richard Townsend


Thursday, April 25th

6:30 p.m.
Reception and Dinner - Lamberts Downtown Barbecue

Friday, April 26th - Morning Session Chair: TBD - Presentations will be in Classroom 203

8:00 a.m. - 8:50 p.m.
Registration and Breakfast - Conferee Break Area

9:00 a.m. - 9:50 a.m.
"Risk Free Interest Rates"
Authors: Jules van Binsbergen, WhartonWilliam Diamond, Wharton, and Marco Grotteriaat, Wharton
Discussant: David Chapman, University of Virginia

10:00 a.m. - 10:50 a.m.
"Human Capitalists"
Authors: Andrea Eisfeldt, UCLA, Antonio Falato, Federal Reserve Board, and Mindy Xiaolan, The University of
Texas at Austin  
Discussant: Daniel Greenwald,  MIT

11:00 a.m. - 11:50 a.m.
"Entrepreneurial Spillovers from Corporate R&D"
Authors: Tania Babina, Columbia University, and Sabrina Howell, NYU
Discussant: Ayako Yasuda, Stanford University

12:00 p.m. - 1:00 p.m.
Lunch - Tejas Dining Room

1:00 p.m. - 1:50 p.m.
"Too Much Skin in the Game? The Effect of Mortgage Market Concentration on Credit and House Prices"
Author: Deeksha Gupta, Carnegie Mellon University
Discussant: William Fuchs, The University of Texas at Austin

2:00 p.m. - 2:50 p.m.
"No Job, No Money, No Refi: Frictions to Refinancing in a Recession"
Authors: Anthony DeFusco, Northwestern University, and John Mondragon, Northwestern University
Discussant: Tim McQuade, Stanford University

3:00 p.m. - 3:50 p.m.
"Do Consumers Strike Bad Deals with Collectors? Evidence from Out of Court Settlements"
Authors: Ing Haw Chang, DartmouthFelipe Severino, Dartmouth, and Richard Townsend, UC-San Diego
Discussants: Umit Gurun, UT-Dallas

4:30 p.m.
Depart for dinner cruise

5:15 p.m.
Boat departs from Walsh Marina

Saturday, April 27th - Morning Session Chair: TBD - Presentation will be in Classroom 203

8:00 a.m. - 8:50 p.m.
Registration and Breakfast - Conferee Break Area

9:00 a.m. - 9:50 a.m.
"Countercyclical Labor Income Risk and Portfolio Choices over the Life Cycle"
Author: Sylvain Catherine, Wharton
Discussant: Hengjie Ai, University of Minnesota

10:00 a.m. - 10:50 a.m.
"The Ostrich in Us: Selective Attention to Personal Finances"
Authors: Michaela Pagel, Columbia Universityand Arna Olafsson, Copenhagen Business School
Discussant: Francesco D’Acunto, Boston College

11:00 a.m. - 11:50 a.m.
"A Day Late and a Dollar Short: Liquidity and Household Formation Among Student Borrowers"
Authors: Sarena Goodman, Federal Reserve Board, Adam Isen, U.S. Department of the Treasury, and Constantine Yannelis, University of Chicago
Discussant: Amir Kermani, UC-Berkeley

12:00 p.m. - 1:30 p.m.
Lunch - Tejas Dining Room


Click HERE to register.

Registration deadline: Tuesday, April 16, 2019.



AT&T Executive Education & Conference Center
1900 University Avenue
Austin, TX 78705

We have negotiated a room block with a special rate of $189 per night at the AT&T Center. Cut-off Date: Friday, March 29, 2019. This date is firm and there will be no exceptions. Go to the following link to make a reservation:

Or by phone (512) 404-3600; please reference the group name, 21st Annual Texas Finance Festival  in order to receive the group rate over the contracted dates. 

Below is a list of other hotels near The University.  We DO NOT have room blocks at these hotels.

Hampton Inn & Suites Austin at The University/Capitol
1701 Lavaca Street
Austin, TX  78701
(512) 499-8881

Hotel Ella
1900 Rio Grade Street
Austin, TX 78705
(512) 495-1800

DoubleTree Suites by Hilton Hotel
303 W. 15th Street
Austin, TX 78701
(512) 478-7000


Program Committee:
Laura Starks (
Gregor Matvos (

Organizing Committee:
Juana Hardwick (
Kyle Hernandez (

Editors Representing RFS:
Itay Goldstein (University of Pennsylvania)
Stijn Van Nieuwerburgh (New York University)

Selection Committee:


History and Programs

The first meeting of the Texas Finance Festival (TFF) was in Kerrville, Texas, in 1999. The Kerrville Folk Music Festival is held annually in Kerrville, thus the name for our conference. Since then, the conference has been held in Austin, Horseshoe Bay, Marble Falls, and San Antonio. View Past Programs

2018 Program

“Going Entrepreneurial? IPOs, Employee Reallocation, and New Firm Creation”
Authors: Tania Babina (Columbia University) and Paige Quimet (University of North Carolina)
Thomas Chemmanur (Boston College)

“Labor Scarcity, Finance, and Innovation: Evidence from Antebellum America”
Authors: Yifei Mao (Arizona State University) and Jessie Wang (Cornell University)
Carola Frydman (Northwestern University)

“Marketplace Lending: A New Banking Paradigm?”
Authors: Boris Vallee (Harvard Business School) and Yao Zeng (University of Washington)
Adair Morse (University of California-Berkeley)

“Disaster on the Horizon: The Price Effect of Sea Level Rise”
AuthorsRyan Lewis (University of Colorado at Boulder)
Discussant: Shimon Kogan (MIT)

“Do Investors Value Sustainability?A Natural Experiment Examining Ranking and Fund Flows”
Authors: Samuel Hartzmark (University of Chicago)
Karl Lins (University of Utah)

“Credit Where Credit is Due: Drivers of Subprime Credit”
Authors: Elizabeth Berger (Cornell University) and Alex Butler (Rice University)
Discussant: Rodney Ramcharan (University of Southern California)

“Do Intermediaries Matter for Aggregate Asset Prices?”
  Authors: Valentin Haddad (UCLA) and Tyler Muir (UCLA)
Matt Spiegel (Yale University)

“Economic Consequences of Housing Speculation”
Michael Sockin (University of Texas at Austin) and Zhenyu Gao (Chinese University of Hong Kong S.A.R.)
Gene Amromin (Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago)

“Real Option Exercise: Empirical Evidence”
Authors:  Paul Decaire (Wharton School of Business) and Erik Gilje (Wharton School of Business)
Discussant: Gustavo Grullon (Rice University)

2017 Program

“CEO Horizon, Optimal Duration and the Escalation of Short-Termism”
Authors: Felipe Varas (Duke University) and Ivan Marinovic (Duke University)
Discussant: Jaime Zender (University of Colorado)

“The Value of Offshore Secrets – Evidence from the Panama Papers”
Authors: James O’Donovan (INSEAD), Hanna Wagner (Bocconi University), and Stefan Zeume (University of Michigan)
Alexander Dyck (University of Toronto)

“Credit Allocation under Economic Stimulus: Evidence from China”
 Authors: Jacopo Ponticelli (University of Chicago) and Will Cong (University of Chicago)
 Discussant: Hui Chen (Massachusetts Institute of Technology)

"Bank Branch Supply and the Unbanked Phenomenon”
Authors: Adrien Matray (Princeton University) and Claire Célérier (University of Toronto)
Discussant: Elena Loutskina (University of Virginia)

“Cancer Diagnoses and Household Debt Overhang"
Authors: Catherine Fedorenko (Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center), Arpit Gupta (New York University), Edward Morrison (Columbia Law School), and Scott Ramsey (Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center)
Discussant: Sumit Agarwal (Georgetown University) 

“The Housing Crisis and the Rise in Student Loans”
Authors: John Mondragon (Northwestern University), Gene Amromin (Northwestern University), and Janice Eberly (Northwestern University)
Discussant: Amiyatosh Purnanandam (University of Michigan) 

 “Dissecting Characteristics Nonparametrically”
  Authors: Andreas Neuhierl (University of Notre Dame), Joachim Freyberger (University of Wisconsin), and
 Michael Weber (University of Chicago) 
 Discussant: Kent Daniel (Columbia University) 

 “Return Predictability Revisited Using Weighted Least Squares”
 Authors: Travis Johnson (University of Texas at Austin)  
Michael Johannes (Columbia University)

 “Long Run Growth of Financial Technology”

  Authors: Maryam Farboodi (Princeton University) and Laura Veldkamp (New York University)
  Discussant: Simon Gervais (Duke University)