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A Survival Analysis of Australian Equity Mutual Funds



Determining which types of mutual (or managed) investment funds are good financial investments is complicated by potential surbivorship biases. This project adds to a small recent international literature on the patterns and determinants of mutual fund survivorship. We use statistical techniques for survival data that are rarely applied in finance. Of specific interest is the hazard rate of fund closure, which gives the variation over time in the conditional probability of fund closure given fund survival to date. For a sample of 251 retail investment funds in Australia from 1980 to 1999 we identify a hump-shaped hazard function that reaches its maximum after about five or six years, a pattern similar to the UK findings of Lunde, Timmermann and Blake (1999). We also consider the impact of monthly and annual fund performance (gross and relative to a market benchmark). Returns relative to the benckmark are much more important than gross returns, with hgiher relative returns associated with lower hazard of fund closure. There appears to be an asymmetric response to performance, with positive shocks having a larger impact on the hazard rate than negative shocks.

Suggested Citation

  • A. Colin Cameron & Anthony D. Hall, 2003. "A Survival Analysis of Australian Equity Mutual Funds," Research Paper Series 94, Quantitative Finance Research Centre, University of Technology, Sydney.
  • Handle: RePEc:uts:rpaper:94

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Rafael La Porta & Florencio Lopez-de-Silanes & Andrei Shleifer & Robert W. Vishny, 1998. "Law and Finance," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 106(6), pages 1113-1155, December.
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    3. Barth, James R. & Caprio, Gerard & Levine, Ross, 2000. "Banking systems around the globe : do regulation and ownership affect the performance and stability?," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2325, The World Bank.
    4. Beck, Thorsten & Demirguc-Kunt, Asli & Levine, Ross, 1999. "A new database on financial development and structure," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2146, The World Bank.
    5. Clare, Andrew & Priestley, Richard, 2002. "Calculating the probability of failure of the Norwegian banking sector," Journal of Multinational Financial Management, Elsevier, vol. 12(1), pages 21-40, February.
    6. Pettway, Richard H., 1980. "Potential Insolvency, Market Efficiency, and Bank Regulation of Large Commercial Banks," Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis, Cambridge University Press, vol. 15(01), pages 219-236, March.
    7. Demirguc-Kunt, Asli & Levine, Ross, 1999. "Bank-based and market-based financial systems - cross-country comparisons," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2143, The World Bank.
    8. William F. Sharpe, 1964. "Capital Asset Prices: A Theory Of Market Equilibrium Under Conditions Of Risk," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 19(3), pages 425-442, September.
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    Cited by:

    1. M. Kabir Hassan & Jung Suk-Yu, 2007. "Rational Speculative Bubbles: An Empirical Investigation of the Middle East and North African Stock Markets," NFI Working Papers 2007-WP-31, Indiana State University, Scott College of Business, Networks Financial Institute.
    2. Qiang Bu & Nelson Lacey, 2009. "On understanding mutual fund terminations," Journal of Economics and Finance, Springer;Academy of Economics and Finance, vol. 33(1), pages 80-99, January.
    3. Cogneau, Philippe & Hübner, Georges, 2015. "The prediction of fund failure through performance diagnostics," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 50(C), pages 224-241.
    4. Jo-Hui Chen & Chih-Sean Chen, 2012. "The study of contagious paces of financial crises," Quality & Quantity: International Journal of Methodology, Springer, vol. 46(6), pages 1825-1846, October.
    5. Jung-Suk Yu & Kabir Hassan, 2008. "Rational Speculative Bubbles: An Empirical Investigation of the Middle East and North African (MENA) Stock Markets," Working Papers 388, Economic Research Forum, revised 01 Jan 2008.
    6. Jung-Suk Yu & M. Kabir Hassan, 2010. "Rational speculative bubbles in MENA stock markets," Studies in Economics and Finance, Emerald Group Publishing, vol. 27(3), pages 247-264, August.

    More about this item


    mutual funds; survivorship bias; duration analysis; cox regression;

    JEL classification:

    • C14 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric and Statistical Methods and Methodology: General - - - Semiparametric and Nonparametric Methods: General
    • G14 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Information and Market Efficiency; Event Studies; Insider Trading
    • G23 - Financial Economics - - Financial Institutions and Services - - - Non-bank Financial Institutions; Financial Instruments; Institutional Investors

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