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Survivorship Bias and Mutual Fund Performance: Relevance, Significance, and Methodical Differences

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  • Martin Rohleder
  • Hendrik Scholz
  • Marco Wilkens

Abstract

This is the first paper systematically calculating, testing and explaining different definitions of the survivorship bias in fund performance. We document that the survival-performance-relation is stronger for small funds and we find significant under-performance of non-survivors but no significant out-performance of new funds. Survivorship bias is still a problem as well in other fields of research, e.g., in countries where survivorship bias-free data is not available and because certain methods require truncated data. This paper provides guidance on how to deal with and reduce survivorship bias in empirical studies. Copyright 2010, Oxford University Press.

Suggested Citation

  • Martin Rohleder & Hendrik Scholz & Marco Wilkens, 2010. "Survivorship Bias and Mutual Fund Performance: Relevance, Significance, and Methodical Differences," Review of Finance, European Finance Association, vol. 15(2), pages 441-474.
  • Handle: RePEc:oup:revfin:v:15:y:2010:i:2:p:441-474
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    Cited by:

    1. Omneya Abdelsalam & Meryem Duygun & Juan Carlos Matallín-Sáez & Emili Tortosa-Ausina, 2014. "Is Ethical Money Sensitive to Past Returns? The Case of Portfolio Constraints and Persistence of Islamic and Socially Responsible Funds," Working Papers 2014/19, Economics Department, Universitat Jaume I, Castellón (Spain).
    2. Hung-Cheng Lai & Kuan-Min Wang, 2016. "Does Survivorship Bias of Mutual Funds Differ Between Liquidations and Mergers?," Eastern European Business and Economics Journal, Eastern European Business and Economics Studies Centre, vol. 2(4), pages 299-314.
    3. Juan Carlos Matallín-Sáez & Amparo Soler-Domínguez & Emili Tortosa-Ausina, 2016. "Ethical strategy focus and mutual fund management: performance and persistence," Working Papers 2016/01, Economics Department, Universitat Jaume I, Castellón (Spain).
    4. Cogneau, Philippe & Hübner, Georges, 2015. "The prediction of fund failure through performance diagnostics," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 50(C), pages 224-241.
    5. Martin Rohleder & Dominik Schulte & Marco Wilkens, 2017. "Management of flow risk in mutual funds," Review of Quantitative Finance and Accounting, Springer, vol. 48(1), pages 31-56, January.
    6. repec:kap:jfsres:v:51:y:2017:i:3:d:10.1007_s10693-015-0234-x is not listed on IDEAS
    7. Martin Rohleder, 2015. "The Relation between Past Flows and Future Performance: Simple Investment Strategies in the Mutual Fund Sector," International Journal of Financial Studies, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 3(1), pages 1-28, February.
    8. Babalos, Vassilios & Philippas, Nikolaos & Doumpos, Michael & Zompounidis, Constantin, 2011. "Mutual funds performance appraisal using stochastic multicriteria acceptability analysis," MPRA Paper 37953, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    9. Breloer, Bernhard & Scholz, Hendrik & Wilkens, Marco, 2014. "Performance of international and global equity mutual funds: Do country momentum and sector momentum matter?," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 43(C), pages 58-77.

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