Chief Executive Officer Attributes and Trade
Many articles in international trade literature have shown that firm productivity is a robust determinant of firms’ export and import activities. Further, the literature has also found that, despite being statistically significant, the magnitude of impact of firm productivity on exports/imports is not large, and there are many firms which are productive enough to be able to export their goods but do not and also many firms which are not productive enough to export but do. This paper posits that, amongst many determinants for export activity other than firm productivity, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) attributes is one of them. Using a large unique firm-level data set, this study examines the effects of CEO attributes and other firm characteristics on firms’ export and import activities. It is found that CEO education abroad matters, and its impact is even higher than other factors. CEOs’ age and gender have little association with exports/imports.