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I create a .bib file

@article {HanKumar2011,
author = {Han, Bing and Kumar, Alok},
title = {Speculative Retail Trading and Asset Prices},
journal = {Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis (JFQA)},
volume = {Forthcoming},
year = {2011},

I then import this file into by .lyx file by doing insert > list/toc > bibtex bibliography. I select the database as the file I have created. The style I select as plainnat. I then go to cite the paper via insert > citation, add the particular id, the preview of the actual cite seems to show up fine. However the problem is that the only citation style available is [#ID] under formatting. I need one that allows me to do author (yyyy). I can't seem to fix this. Does anyone know what's going on?

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up vote 7 down vote accepted

Seems you have to activate this in the settings, so go to Document --> Settings --> Bibliography, and choose Natbib and author-year as citation style. Then you'll have more styles to choose from.

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Is there an example list of styles available, so I can predict what will be generated? – johntait.org Jun 18 '13 at 11:57
Note -- it doesn't seem sufficient to change the citation style of your master document. I had to also change it for each child document before the natbib options appeared in the citation dialogue. – Desty Jun 8 '14 at 17:24
I have changed this in my document and changed each citation style to (Surname, year). The LyX preview shows the citation style I want. However, the resulting PDF remains in the numeric [1] style. (LyX 2.1 on Windows) – badp Jul 29 '14 at 14:49
@badp Which bibliography style are you using? Works fine here with plainnat. – Torbjørn T. Jul 29 '14 at 19:16
@TorbjørnT. Ooooh, good catch! You also have to set your bibliography section to use plainnat instead of plain. – badp Jul 29 '14 at 19:44

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