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Tales From The Future
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I look at value and contrarian ideas as well as disruptive technologies worldwide, both on the long and short side. I also like to discuss the influence of monetary policy on stock markets. I usually do not engage in short-term trading and myopic analysis (quarter by quarter, without looking at... More
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  • Behavioral Economics And Behavioral Finance - Neuro Finance (Part III)  0 comments
    Sep 17, 2013 10:17 AM

    (This is the last part - III - of three Instablogs on Behavioral Finance)

    A newer field of research related to Behavioral Economics and Finance are advances in Neuroscience:

    Neuroscience research demonstrates how these emotions originate in the brain's center of emotional processing, the limbic system, in various financial situations. We can learn to identify these emotional disturbances in our financial reasoning. Distorted reasoning is often characterized by intense feeling. However, unless we make a conscious effort to become aware of our feelings, we can easily succumb to their destructive tendencies.

    Often, when considering potential gains, our reasoning is distorted by high levels of excitement, hope, and greed. When thinking about potential losses, our reasoning is distorted by high levels of worry, fear, and recent pain. As greed dominates our thought process, we're likely to take on more risk than anticipated. When experiencing strong greed, we often excitedly rush into investments. As fear dominates our reasoning, we're likely to take on less risk than optimal. When fear is at an extreme, we may attempt to gain relief through the panicked selling of painful ("bleeding") positions.


    This topic is too complex to discuss it in a short Instablog entry.

    I will therefore link to a good presentation from Barry Ritholtz, it covers many examples of Behavioral Finance and Neuroscience in Finance.

    Those interested can read more about the keywords listed below on their own:

    A) Behavioral Economics

    1. Herding, Groupthink

    2. Experts: Articulate Incompetents

    3. Optimism Bias

    4. Confirmation Bias

    5. Recency Effect

    6. Emotions impact perception

    B) Neuro-Finance

    7. Anticipation vs. Rewards

    8. Selective Perception & Retention

    9. A Species of Dopamine Addicts

    10. Endowment Effect of Ownership

    11. Monkeys Love a Narrative

    12. Cognitive Errors Impact Processes

    His full presentation slides can be found here:


    To finish off, a familiar picture for many investors may serve as a simple summary on the topic:

    (click to enlarge)

    (Source: behaviorgap.com/ )

    I hope readers change (or at least understand) their behavior before going through too many of these greed and fear cycles :)

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