IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this article

Financial contagion in the laboratory: The cross-market rebalancing channel


  • Cipriani, Marco
  • Gardenal, Gloria
  • Guarino, Antonio


We present the results of the first experimental study of financial markets contagion. We develop a model of financial contagion amenable to be tested in the laboratory. In the model, contagion happens because of cross-market rebalancing, a channel for transmission of shocks across markets first studied by Kodres and Pritsker (2002). Theory predicts that, because of portfolio rebalancing, a negative shock in one market transmits itself to the others, as investors adjust their portfolio allocations. The theory is supported by the experimental results. The price observed in the laboratory is close to that predicted by theory, and strong contagion effects are observed. The results are robust across different market structures. Moreover, as theory predicts, lower asymmetric information in a (“developed”) financial market increases the contagion effects in (“emerging”) markets.

Suggested Citation

  • Cipriani, Marco & Gardenal, Gloria & Guarino, Antonio, 2013. "Financial contagion in the laboratory: The cross-market rebalancing channel," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 37(11), pages 4310-4326.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:jbfina:v:37:y:2013:i:11:p:4310-4326 DOI: 10.1016/j.jbankfin.2013.06.005

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: Full text for ScienceDirect subscribers only

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to search for a different version of it.

    References listed on IDEAS

    1. King, Mervyn A & Wadhwani, Sushil, 1990. "Transmission of Volatility between Stock Markets," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 3(1), pages 5-33.
    2. Laura E. Kodres & Matthew Pritsker, 2002. "A Rational Expectations Model of Financial Contagion," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 57(2), pages 769-799, April.
    3. Cipriani Marco & Guarino Antonio, 2008. "Herd Behavior and Contagion in Financial Markets," The B.E. Journal of Theoretical Economics, De Gruyter, vol. 8(1), pages 1-56, October.
    4. Plott, Charles R. & Gray, Peter, 1990. "The multiple unit double auction," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 13(2), pages 245-258, March.
    5. Grossman, Sanford J & Stiglitz, Joseph E, 1980. "On the Impossibility of Informationally Efficient Markets," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 70(3), pages 393-408, June.
    6. John Geanakoplos & Ana Fostel, 2008. "Leverage Cycles and the Anxious Economy," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 98(4), pages 1211-1244, September.
    7. Albert S. Kyle, 2001. "Contagion as a Wealth Effect," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 56(4), pages 1401-1440, August.
    8. Urs Fischbacher, 2007. "z-Tree: Zurich toolbox for ready-made economic experiments," Experimental Economics, Springer;Economic Science Association, vol. 10(2), pages 171-178, June.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)


    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.

    Cited by:

    1. Pragidis, I.C. & Aielli, G.P. & Chionis, D. & Schizas, P., 2015. "Contagion effects during financial crisis: Evidence from the Greek sovereign bonds market," Journal of Financial Stability, Elsevier, vol. 18(C), pages 127-138.

    More about this item


    Financial contagion; Rebalancing channel; Laboratory experiment;

    JEL classification:

    • C92 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Laboratory, Group Behavior
    • G01 - Financial Economics - - General - - - Financial Crises
    • G12 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Asset Pricing; Trading Volume; Bond Interest Rates


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eee:jbfina:v:37:y:2013:i:11:p:4310-4326. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Dana Niculescu). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.