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Emotion and financial markets

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Author Info

  • Lucy F. Ackert
  • Bryan K. Church
  • Richard Deaves

Abstract

Psychologists and economists hold vastly different views about human behavior. Psychologists contend that economists' models bear little relation to actual behavior. This view is supported by a large body of psychological research that shows that emotional state can significantly affect decision making. ; Economists, on the other hand, argue that psychological studies have no theoretical basis and offer little empirical evidence about people's decision-making processes. The reigning financial economics paradigm-the efficient market hypothesis (EMH)-assumes that individuals make rational investment decisions using the rules of probability and statistics. A newer branch of financial economics called behavioral finance applies lessons from psychology to financial decision making, but most of these studies have focused on cognitive biases rather than emotion. ; The authors of this article argue that emotion has important, and possibly beneficial, influences on financial behavior. After defining the term emotion and describing how emotions can be categorized, the authors consider how emotions influence human behavior. The discussion focuses particularly on three aspects of emotion and financial decision making: emotional disposition and stock market pricing, the feeling of regret, and investors' emotional response to information. ; No new financial economics paradigm that incorporates behavioral influences and better models actual behavior has yet emerged to replace the EMH. Yet the authors believe that emotional behavior's influence on financial decision making should be taken into account in future research.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta in its journal Economic Review.

Volume (Year): (2003)
Issue (Month): Q2 ()
Pages: 33-41

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Handle: RePEc:fip:fedaer:y:2003:i:q2:p:33-41:n:v.88no.2

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Keywords: Financial markets;

References

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  1. Lee, Charles M C & Shleifer, Andrei & Thaler, Richard H, 1991. " Investor Sentiment and the Closed-End Fund Puzzle," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 46(1), pages 75-109, March.
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  3. Amos Tversky & Daniel Kahneman, 1979. "Prospect Theory: An Analysis of Decision under Risk," Levine's Working Paper Archive 7656, David K. Levine.
  4. David Hirshleifer & Tyler Shumway, 2003. "Good Day Sunshine: Stock Returns and the Weather," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 58(3), pages 1009-1032, 06.
  5. Mark Kamstra & Lisa Kramer & Maurice Levi, 2002. "Winter blues: a SAD stock market cycle," Working Paper 2002-13, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta.
  6. Jamal, Karim & Sunder, Shyam, 1996. "Bayesian equilibrium in double auctions populated by biased heuristic traders," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 31(2), pages 273-291, November.
  7. Jon Elster, 1998. "Emotions and Economic Theory," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 36(1), pages 47-74, March.
  8. Lucy F. Ackert & Bryan K. Church, 1998. "The effects of subject pool and design experience on rationality in experimental asset markets," Working Paper 98-18, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta.
  9. Benjamin E. Hermalin and Alice M. Isen., 1999. "The Effect of Affect on Economic and Strategic Decision Making," Economics Working Papers E99-270, University of California at Berkeley.
  10. Wright, William F. & Bower, Gordon H., 1992. "Mood effects on subjective probability assessment," Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Elsevier, vol. 52(2), pages 276-291, July.
  11. Romer, Paul M., 2000. "Thinking and Feeling," Research Papers 1618, Stanford University, Graduate School of Business.
  12. Daniel, Kent & Hirshleifer, David & Teoh, Siew Hong, 2002. "Investor psychology in capital markets: evidence and policy implications," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 49(1), pages 139-209, January.
  13. Andrew W. Lo & Dmitry V. Repin, 2001. "The Psychophysiology of Real-Time Financial Risk Processing," NBER Working Papers 8508, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  14. Shleifer, Andrei, 2000. "Inefficient Markets: An Introduction to Behavioral Finance," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780198292272.
  15. Chen, Shu-Heng & Yeh, Chia-Hsuan, 2002. "On the emergent properties of artificial stock markets: the efficient market hypothesis and the rational expectations hypothesis," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 49(2), pages 217-239, October.
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Cited by:
  1. Marcia L. Zindel & Emilio Menezes & Raul Matsushita & Sergio Da Silva, 2010. "Biological characteristics modulating investor overconfidence," Economics Bulletin, AccessEcon, vol. 30(2), pages 1496-1508.
  2. Da Silva, Sergio & Baldo, Dinora & Matsushita, Raul, 2011. "Biological correlates of the Allais paradox - updated," MPRA Paper 32747, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  3. Lucy F. Ackert & Jorge Martinez-Vazquez & Mark Rider, 2004. "Tax policy design in the presence of social preferences: some experimental evidence," Working Paper 2004-33, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta.
  4. Emmanuel PETIT (GREThA UMR CNRS 5113), 2010. "The role of regret in the persistence of anomalies in financial markets (In French)," Cahiers du GREThA 2010-07, Groupe de Recherche en Economie Théorique et Appliquée.

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