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Behavioral Finance and Efficient Markets: What does the Euro Crisis Tell us?

Graham Bird, Wenti Du and Thomas Willett
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Wenti Du: Claremont Graduate University
Thomas Willett: Claremont McKenna College

Open Economies Review, 2017, vol. 28, issue 2, No 4, 273-295

Abstract: Abstract The crisis in the Eurozone between 2009 and 2015 provides an opportunity to test whether financial markets fully display the characteristics associated with the efficient market hypothesis or whether behavioral approaches which focus on excessive pessimism and confirmation bias also offer insights into the performance of markets. In this paper we test several important aspects of market behavior. Specifically we examine the extent to which large changes in risk premia amongst the countries that encountered crises were related to news. We also investigate whether the impact of good and bad news was symmetrical. Finally we explore whether changes in risk premia in Greece affected risk premia in other countries in an asymmetrical and biased way. We discover that while there is considerable evidence that financial markets often performed in an efficient way during the crisis, there are also important departures from this pattern that are consistent with the behavioral approach. Our findings imply that both the efficient and behavioral approaches are helpful when trying to understand how markets perform.

Keywords: Behavioral finance; Efficient markets; Euro crisis (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2017
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DOI: 10.1007/s11079-017-9436-1

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