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Changes to mutual fund risk: Intentional or mean reverting?

Author

Listed:
  • Cullen, Grant
  • Gasbarro, Dominic
  • Monroe, Gary S.
  • Zumwalt, J. Kenton

Abstract

An empirical issue is whether a mutual fund’s change in intertemporal risk is intentional or arises from risk mean reversion. Our methodology uses actual fund trades to identify funds that actively change risk. Funds that are statistically identified as trading to change return variance or tracking error variance do not exhibit risk mean reversion. Mostly, funds trade to reduce risk and, in particular, tracking error variance. This is most evident for funds that previously attained a low tracking error variance. We find no evidence of a relation between past performance and intended changes to return variance or tracking error variance.

Suggested Citation

  • Cullen, Grant & Gasbarro, Dominic & Monroe, Gary S. & Zumwalt, J. Kenton, 2012. "Changes to mutual fund risk: Intentional or mean reverting?," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 36(1), pages 112-120.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:jbfina:v:36:y:2012:i:1:p:112-120
    DOI: 10.1016/j.jbankfin.2011.06.011
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Jennifer Lynch Koski & Jeffrey Pontiff, 1999. "How Are Derivatives Used? Evidence from the Mutual Fund Industry," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 54(2), pages 791-816, April.
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    3. Chevalier, Judith & Ellison, Glenn, 1997. "Risk Taking by Mutual Funds as a Response to Incentives," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 105(6), pages 1167-1200, December.
    4. Cullen, Grant & Gasbarro, Dominic & Monroe, Gary S., 2010. "Mutual fund trades and the value of contradictory private information," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 34(2), pages 378-387, February.
    5. Jennifer Huang & Clemens Sialm & Hanjiang Zhang, 2011. "Risk Shifting and Mutual Fund Performance," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 24(8), pages 2575-2616.
    6. Goriaev, Alexei & Nijman, Theo E. & Werker, Bas J. M., 2005. "Yet another look at mutual fund tournaments," Journal of Empirical Finance, Elsevier, vol. 12(1), pages 127-137, January.
    7. Busse, Jeffrey A., 2001. "Another Look at Mutual Fund Tournaments," Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis, Cambridge University Press, vol. 36(01), pages 53-73, March.
    8. Taylor, Jonathan, 2003. "Risk-taking behavior in mutual fund tournaments," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 50(3), pages 373-383, March.
    9. Brown, Keith C & Harlow, W V & Starks, Laura T, 1996. " Of Tournaments and Temptations: An Analysis of Managerial Incentives in the Mutual Fund Industry," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 51(1), pages 85-110, March.
    10. Chen, Hsiu-lang & Pennacchi, George G., 2009. "Does Prior Performance Affect a Mutual Fund’s Choice of Risk? Theory and Further Empirical Evidence," Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis, Cambridge University Press, vol. 44(04), pages 745-775, August.
    11. Elton, Edwin J. & Gruber, Martin J. & Blake, Christopher R. & Krasny, Yoel & Ozelge, Sadi O., 2010. "The effect of holdings data frequency on conclusions about mutual fund behavior," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 34(5), pages 912-922, May.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Babalos, Vassilios & Mamatzakis, Emmanuel C. & Matousek, Roman, 2015. "The performance of US equity mutual funds," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 52(C), pages 217-229.
    2. Ha, Yeonjeong & Ko, Kwangsoo, 2017. "Why do fund managers increase risk?," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 78(C), pages 108-116.
    3. Chia-Ying Chan & Christine W. Lai & Liang-Chung Lee, 2017. "Strategic Choice of Risk: Evidence from Mutual Fund Families," Journal of Financial Services Research, Springer;Western Finance Association, vol. 51(1), pages 125-163, February.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Mutual funds; Tournament; Mean-reversion; Tracking error; Risk;

    JEL classification:

    • G11 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Portfolio Choice; Investment Decisions
    • G23 - Financial Economics - - Financial Institutions and Services - - - Non-bank Financial Institutions; Financial Instruments; Institutional Investors

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