Chris Yenkey joined Chicago Booth in 2011 as Assistant Professor of Organizations and Strategy. Yenkey studies the construction of nascent financial markets in developing economies, modeling processes of new investor recruitment into emerging stock exchanges, behavioral differences between inexperienced investors and their institutional counterparts, and the effects of fraud and price volatility on continued participation in the market. Yenkey’s research extends and applies institutional theory, diffusion analysis, organizational theory, and theories of trust in market exchange from sociology to this set of interdisciplinary research questions. In regards to his current research on emerging stock markets in East Africa, Yenkey states, “Emerging markets provide outstanding natural laboratories in which to study in real time processes that underlie the construction and development of market institutions.”
This research received several awards in 2011, including the William H. Newman Award from the Academy of Management, the Louis R. Pondy Best Paper Award from the Organization and Management Theory Division of the AOM, and the Ronald S. Burt Outstanding Paper Award from the American Sociological Association’s Section on Economic Sociology.
While earning his PhD in Sociology at Cornell University, Yenkey conducted extensive fieldwork from 2007-10 at Kenya’s Nairobi Stock Exchange and the Dar es Salaam Stock Exchange in Tanzania and served as a visiting scholar at the Institute for Economic Affairs in Nairobi, Kenya. More recently, he was Associate Director of the Center for the Study of Economy and Society at Cornell University from 2010-11. Prior to his graduate studies, Yenkey received a BA in Economics from the University of Texas-Austin in 2001 and served as a Research Associate in the Department of Economic Research at the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City from 2001-03.
Yenkey’s interest in the social construction of markets began during his years as a professional cyclist, when a healthy appetite led him to explore local markets around the world. After retiring from the sport in the late 1990s, rock climbing and mountaineering replaced bicycles as his athletic venue. Yenkey has climbed extensively through the Western United States and the Peruvian Andes as well as in the Alaska Range and the French Alps.
REVISION: The Social Structure of Speculation: Investor Attributes and Short Term Share
Ownership in Kenya’s
Date Posted: Aug 04, 2010
This study examines how investors of varying levels of wealth, experience in and proximity to Kenya’s emerging stock exchange take advantage of short term profit opportunities in a politically manipulated market characterized by significant early gains in IPO share prices. Analysis of individual-level data for all Kenyan IPO investors shows that first-time investors are often the most likely to sell shares in the first month of trading, while lower income investors quickly learn to imitate the s