- 1998, 11
Why EMU is irrelevant for the German economy
- No one seems to be neutral about the effects of EMU on the German economy. Roughly speaking, there are two camps: those who see the euro as the advent of a newly open, large, and efficient regime which will lead to improvements in European and in particular in German competitiveness; those who see the euro as a weakening of the German commitment to price stability. From a broader macroeconomic perspective, however, it is clear that EMU is unlikely to cause directly any meaningful change either for the better in Standort Deutschland or for the worse in the German price stability. There is ample evidence that changes in monetary regimes (so long as non leaving hyperinflation) induce little changes in real economic structures such as labor or financial markets. Regional asymmetries of the sorts in the EU do not tend to translate into monetary differences. Most importantly, there is no good reason to believe that the ECB will behave any differently than the Bundesbank.
- 2013, 23
Why do retail investors make costly mistakes?
An experiment on mutual fund choice
Jill E. Fisch
- There is mounting evidence that retail investors make predictable, costly investment mistakes, including underinvestment, naïve diversification, and payment of excessive fund fees. Over the past thirty-five years, however, participant-directed 401(k) plans have largely replaced professionally managed pension plans, requiring unsophisticated retail investors to navigate the financial markets themselves. Policy-makers have struggled with regulatory interventions designed to improve the quality of investment decisions without a clear understanding of the reasons for investor mistakes. Absent such an understanding, it is difficult to design effective regulatory responses. This article offers a first step in understanding the investor decision-making process. We use an internet-based experiment to disentangle possible explanations for inefficient investment decisions. The experiment employs a simplified construct of an employee’s allocation among the options in a retirement plan coupled with technology that enables us to collect data on the specific information that investors choose to view. In addition to collecting general information about the process by which investors choose among mutual fund options, we employ an experimental manipulation to test the effect of an instruction on the importance of mutual fund fees. Pairing this instruction with simplified fee disclosure allows us to distinguish between motivation-limits and cognition-limits as explanations for the widespread findings that investors ignore fees in their investment decisions. Our results offer partial but limited grounds for optimism. On the one hand, within our simplified experimental construct, our subjects allocated more money, on average, to higher-value funds. Furthermore, subjects who received the fees instruction paid closer attention to mutual fund fees and allocated their investments into funds with lower fees. On the other hand, the effects of even a blunt fees instruction were limited, and investors were unable to identify and avoid clearly inferior fund options. In addition, our results suggest that excessive, naïve diversification strategies are driving many investment decisions. Although our findings are preliminary, they suggest valuable avenues for future research and important implications for regulation of retail investing.
- 2010, 23
Why do investors sell losers? How adaptation to losses affects future capitulation decisions
- According to disposition effect theory, people hold losing investments too long. However, many investors eventually sell at a loss, and little is known about which psychological factors contribute to these capitulation decisions. This study integrates prospect theory, utility maximization theory, and theory on reference point adaptation to argue that the combination of a negative expectation about an investment’s future performance and a low level of adaptation to previous losses leads to a greater capitulation probability. The test of this hypothesis in a dynamic experimental setting reveals that a larger total loss and longer time spent in a losing position lead to downward adaptations of the reference point. Negative expectations about future investment performance lead to a greater capitulation probability. Consistent with the theoretical framework, empirical evidence supports the relevance of the interaction between adaptation and expectation as a determinant of capitulation decisions. Keywords: Investments , Adaptation , Reference Point , Capitulation , Selling Decisions , Disposition Effect , Financial Markets JEL Classification: D91, D03, D81
- 2006, 12
Why do contracts differ between VC types? : market segmentation versus corporate governance varieties
- We model the impact of bank mergers on loan competition, reserve holdings and aggregate liquidity. A merger changes the distribution of liquidity shocks and creates an internal money market, leading to financial cost efficiencies and more precise estimates of liquidity needs. The merged banks may increase their reserve holdings through an internalization effect or decrease them because of a diversification effect. The merger also affects loan market competition, which in turn modifies the distribution of bank sizes and aggregate liquidity needs. Mergers among large banks tend to increase aggregate liquidity needs and thus the public provision of liquidity through monetary operations of the central bank. JEL Classification: G24, G32, G34
- 2002, 02 r
Why borrowers pay premiums to larger lenders : empirical evidence from sovereign syndicated loans
- All other terms being equal (e.g. seniority), syndicated loan contracts provide larger lending compensations (in percentage points) to institutions funding larger amounts. This paper explores empirically the motivation for such a price design on a sample of sovereign syndicated loans in the period 1990-1997. I find strong evidence that a larger premium is associated with higher renegotiation probability and information asymmetries. It hardly has any impact on the number of lenders though. This is consistent with the hypothesis that larger lenders act as main lenders, namely help reduce information asymmetries and provide services in situations of liquidity shortage. This constitutes new evidence of the existence of compensations for such unique services. Moreover, larger payment discrepancies are also associated with larger syndicated loan amounts. This provides further new evidence that larger borrowers bear additional borrowing costs. Revised Version: October, 2003. First version (June 2002) with the title: "Price Discrimination on Syndicated Loans and the Number of Lenders: Empirical Evidence from the Sovereign Debt Syndication" : http://publikationen.ub.uni-frankfurt.de/volltexte/2005/1099/
Who are the value and growth investors? : [Version April 2014]
Laurent E. Calvet
- This paper investigates the determinants of value and growth investing in a large administrative panel of Swedish residents over the 1999-2007 period. We document strong relationships between a household’s portfolio tilt and the household’s financial and demographic characteristics. Value investors have higher financial and real estate wealth, lower leverage, lower income risk, lower human capital, and are more likely to be female than the average growth investor. Households actively migrate to value stocks over the life-cycle and, at higher frequencies, dynamically offset the passive variations in the value tilt induced by market movements. We verify that these results are not driven by cohort effects, financial sophistication, biases toward popular or professionally close stocks, or unobserved heterogeneity in preferences. We relate these household-level results to some of the leading explanations of the value premium.
- 1998, 09
Where do we stand in the theory of finance? : a selective overview with reference to Erich Gutenberg
Jan Pieter Krahnen
- For the past 20 years, financial markets research has concerned itself with issues related to the evaluation and management of financial securities in efficient capital markets and with issues of management control in incomplete markets. The following selective overview focuses on key aspects of the theory and empirical experience of management control under conditions of asymmetric information. The objective is examine the validity of the recently advanced hypothesis on the myths of corporate control. The present overview is based on Gutenberg's position that there exists a discrete corporate interest, as distinct from and separate from the interests of the shareholders or other stakeholders. In the third volume of Grundlagen der BWL: Die Finanzen, published in 1969, this position of Gutenberg's is coupled with an appeal for a so-called financial equilibrium to be maintained. Not until recently have models grounded in capital market theory been developed which also allow for a firm's management to exercise autonomy vis-à-vis its stakeholder. This paper was prepared for the Erich Gutenberg centenary conference on December 12 and 13, 1997 in Cologne.
- 1998, 12
When an event is not an event : the curious case of an emerging market
- Shares trading in the Bolsa mexicana de Valores do not seem to react to company news. Using a sample of Mexican corporate news announcements from the period July 1994 through June 1996, this paper finds that there is nothing unusual about returns, volatility of returns, volume of trade or bid-ask spreads in the event window. This suggests one of five possibilities: our sample size is small; or markets are inefficient; or markets are efficient but the corporate news announcements are not value-relevant; or markets are efficient and corporate news announcements are value-relevant, but they have been fully anticipated; or markets are efficient and corporate news announcements are value-relevant, but unrestricted insider trading has caused prices to fully incorporate the information. The evidence supports the last hypothesis. The paper thus points towards a methodology for ranking emerging stock markets in terms of their market integrity, an approach that can be used with the limited data available in such markets.
- 2004, 10
Weather forecasting for weather derivatives : [revised version: January 2, 2004]
Sean D. Campbell
Francis X. Diebold
- We take a simple time-series approach to modeling and forecasting daily average temperature in U.S. cities, and we inquire systematically as to whether it may prove useful from the vantage point of participants in the weather derivatives market. The answer is, perhaps surprisingly, yes. Time-series modeling reveals conditional mean dynamics, and crucially, strong conditional variance dynamics, in daily average temperature, and it reveals sharp differences between the distribution of temperature and the distribution of temperature surprises. As we argue, it also holds promise for producing the long-horizon predictive densities crucial for pricing weather derivatives, so that additional inquiry into time-series weather forecasting methods will likely prove useful in weather derivatives contexts.
- 2011, 27
Wealth shocks, unemployment shocks and consumption in the wake of the Great Recession
- We use data from the 2009 Internet Survey of the Health and Retirement Study to examine the consumption impact of wealth shocks and unemployment during the Great Recession in the US. We find that many households experienced large capital losses in housing and in their financial portfolios, and that a non-trivial fraction of respondents have lost their job. As a consequence of these shocks, many households reduced substantially their expenditures. We estimate that the marginal propensities to consume with respect to housing and financial wealth are 1 and 3.3 percentage points, respectively. In addition, those who became unemployed reduced spending by 10 percent. We also distinguish the effect of perceived transitory and permanent wealth shocks, splitting the sample between households who think that the stock market is likely to recover in a year’s time, and those who don’t. In line with the predictions of standard models of intertemporal choice, we find that the latter group adjusted much more than the former its spending in response to financial wealth shocks.