Scott Baker
Scott Baker

Assistant Professor of Finance

Print Overview

Scott Ross Baker is an Assistant Professor of Finance. His research is concentrated in empirical finance and macroeconomics. He is currently engaged in a variety of research projects regarding household finance, the effects of policy uncertainty on financial markets and growth, as well as the effects of unemployment benefits on job search intensity. Recent work examines the impact of household leverage and credit constraints in driving sensitivity to both income and asset shocks during the Great Recession.

Scott joined the Finance Department at Northwestern's Kellogg School of Management in July 2014. Scott was born and raised in San Diego, California and received B.A.'s in Economics and Political Science from the University of California, Berkeley in 2007. He received a Ph.D. in Economics from Stanford University in June 2014.

Areas of Expertise
Behavioral Finance
Economics of Uncertainty
Entrepreneurial Finance
Macroeconomics (Includes: Monetary Economics, Federal Reserve, Interest Rates)
Household Finance

Print Vita
Ph.D., 2014, Economics, Stanford University
M.A., 2011, Economics, Stanford University
B.A., 2007, Political Science, University of California, Berkeley, University of California, Berkeley
B.A., 2007, Economics, University of California, Berekely, University of California, Berkeley

Academic Positions
Assistant Professor of Finance, Finance, Northwestern University, Kellogg School of Management, 2014-present
Visiting Scholar, Becker Friedman Institute, 2014-2014

Other Professional Experience
Data Scientist, Intuit, 2011-present

Honors and Awards
Excellence in Refereeing, American Economic Review
Donald P. Jacobs Scholar, 2013-2014
Outstanding Teaching Award, Winter 2012-2013
Bradley Research Fellowship, 2012-2013
Addington Prize in Measurement, 2012
Shultz Graduate Fellowship in Economic Policy, 2010
Stanford Graduate Fellowship, 2008-2009
Earl Rolph Prize and Economics Departmental Citation, 2007
Bachelors of Arts with Highest Honors in Economics, University of California, Berkeley, 2007
Bachelors of Arts with Highest Honors in Political Science, University of California, Berkeley

Print Research
Research Interests
Empirical Macroeconomics, Household Finance , Economics of Uncertainty, Labor

Baker, Scott and Constantine Yannelis. 2015. Income Changes and Consumption: Evidence from the 2013 Federal Government Shutdown. Review of Economic Dynamics.
Baker, Scott. 2015. Effects of Immigrant Legalization on Crime. American Economic Review, Papers & Proceedings.
Baker, Scott, Nick Bloom, Brandice Canes-Wrone, Steve Davis and Jonathan Rodden. 2014. Why Has US Policy Uncertainty Risen Since 1960?. American Economic Review, Papers & Proceedings.
Baker, Scott. Forthcoming. Debt and the Consumption Response to Household Income Shocks. Journal of Political Economy.
Baker, Scott, Nick Bloom and Steve Davis. 2016. Measuring Economic Policy Uncertainty. Quarterly Journal of Economics.
Baker, Scott and Andrey Fradkin. 2015. What Drives Job Search? Evidence from Google Search Data. Review of Economics and Statistics.
Working Papers
Baker, Scott and Xuguang Sheng. 2017. Understanding Information Rigidity in Survey Expectations with Natural Disasters.
Kueng, Lorenz and Scott Baker. 2017. Shopping for Lower Sales Tax Rates.
Baker, Scott. 2014. Effects of the 1986 Immigration Reform and Control Act on Crime.
Baker, Scott and Nick Bloom. 2016. Does Uncertainty Drive Business Cycles? Disasters as Natural Experiments.
Baker, Scott and Roy Mill. 2011. Congressmen's Political Power and Federal Contracting in their Districts.
Book Chapters
Baker, Scott, Nick Bloom and Steve Davis. 2012. "Has Economic Policy Uncertainty Hampered the Recovery?." In Government Policies and the Delayed Economic Recovery, edited by Ohanian, Lee E., John B. Taylor and Ian J. Wright, Stanford, California: Hoover Institution Press.

Print Teaching
Teaching Interests
Finance, Entrepreneurial Finance
Full-Time / Evening & Weekend MBA
Entrepreneurial Finance and Venture Capital (FINC-445-0)
This course uses the case method to study entrepreneurial finance and venture capital decision focusing on the funding decisions of start-ups (fast growing entrepreneurial firms). The goal is to understand how entrepreneurs can raise funds and how venture capital partnerships and growth equity funds choose, value, structure, fund, and manage their investments. The course covers all stages of the financing process, from startup to harvest. Several cases concern technology-based businesses, though the emphasis is on gaining insights into entrepreneurial finance, not technology per se. The course will go into great details with respect to structuring multi-staged financings and valuing entrepreneurial ventures. In addition, the course provides insights on how venture capital partnership work, why do they take the forms they do, and where the crucial problems and opportunities for innovation exists. Consideration is given to the incentives faced by venture capital partnerships and the investors in those partnerships, and how to properly make financing decisions and negotiate contractual terms. Emphasis is given to high growth start-ups searching for funding in the US and venture capital funding as opposed to more traditional entrepreneurial and family firms operating globally (see FINC945 for these topics) and to Leverage Buyouts (see FINC-448 for LBOs). The course is aimed primarily at people who may be involved in an entrepreneurial venture at some point in their careers whether in a large organization, a turnaround, a management buyout or a startup. The course is also useful for venture capital careers.