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Module (6 Credits)

Behavioral Finance

Name in diploma supplement
Behavioral Finance
Responsible
Admission criteria
See exam regulations.
Workload
180 hours of student workload, in detail:
  • Attendance: 60 hours
  • Preparation, follow up: 75 hours
  • Exam preparation: 45 hours
Duration
The module takes 1 semester(s).
Qualification Targets

Students

  • are able to contrast normative finance theory (“How should market participants behave?”) with the findings of descriptive empirical finance research (“How do market participants actually behave?”)
  • know the key insights of theoretical, experimental, and empirical behavioral economics research (“Why do market participants behave this way, and how can their behavior be predicted or changed?”)
  • have a profound understanding of the link between individual behavior in financial markets and market outcomes such as trading volume or return patterns
  • can evaluate scientific studies accurately, understand the methodology used in leading papers of the field, can interpret estimation results correctly and analyze them critically
  • are in a position to identify starting points for their own research
Relevance

Students will be able to better understand how actual economic decisions are made and how these decisions affect economic aggregates in real markets. The acquired skills and knowledge may also help to improve financial decision making. These insights are highly relevant for work in companies (in particular but not only the financial industry), economic research and teaching institutions, or regulatory authorities.

Module Exam

The module-related examination is performed by a written test (usually 60-90 minutes).

Usage in different degree programs
  • BWL-EaF-Ma-2015 Wahlpflichtbereich 1st-3rd Sem, Elective
  • LA-gbF-kbF-BK-Ma-2014 Masterprüfung in der kleinen beruflichen Fachrichtung Finanz- und Rechnungswesen, Steuern Profil "Finanzdienstleistungen" in der kleinen beruflichen Fachrichtung Wahlpflichtbereich im Profil "Finanzdienstleistungen" 1st-3rd Sem, Elective
  • MuU-Ma-2013 Wahlpflichtbereich II Wahlpflichtbereich II B.: Märkte und Unternehmen aus Marktperspektive 1st-3rd Sem, Elective
  • VWL-Ma-2009-V2013 Wahlpflichtbereich II 1st-3rd Sem, Elective
Elements
Name in diploma supplement
Behavioral Finance
Organisational Unit
Lecturers
SPW
2
Language
English
Cycle
winter semester
Participants at most
no limit
Preliminary knowledge

Students are assumed to have undergraduate level knowledge of finance and economics. Some basic knowledge of statistics/econometrics is helpful to understand empirical research conducted in the research papers, which the course content is based on. A sufficient level of spoken and written English language skills is necessary.

Abstract

There is abundant evidence suggesting that the standard economic paradigm of rational individuals does not perfectly describe behavior in financial markets. Behavioral Finance examines how individuals' attitudes and behavior affect their financial decisions. This course reviews research on psychological biases and non-standard preferences in investor behavior, highlights the link between individual behavior and market outcomes, and discusses some of the major empirical “puzzles” in financial markets for which standard finance theory provides no sufficient explanation.

Contents
  • An Introduction to Behavioral Finance
  • Market Participants: Judgment Biases
  • Market Participants: Purchasing and Selling Decisions
  • Market Participants: Experience, Social Networks, Retirement Saving
  • Linking Individual Behavior and Market Outcomes
  • Markets: Efficiency and Limits to Arbitrage
  • Markets: Event Studies
  • Markets: Time Series Properties and Calendar Anomalies
  • Markets: Cross-Sectional Predictability
Literature

As the course discusses partly recent research, there is no specific textbook that covers all aspects of the course. However, useful survey papers for this course are:

  • Barber, B. M., & Odean, T. (2013). Chapter 22 – The Behavior of Individual Investors. In: Handbook of the Economics of Finance  (Vol. 2, pp. 1533–1570).
  • Barberis, N., & Thaler, R. (2003). A survey of behavioral finance. Handbook of the Economics of Finance, (Vol. 1, pp. 1053-1128).
  • Hirshleifer, D. A. (2015). Behavioral finance. In: Annual Review of Financial Economics (Vol. 7, pp. 133-159).
Teaching concept

The course is held in the form of lectures.

Participants
  • BWL-EaF-Ma-2015 Wahlpflichtbereich Modul "Behavioral Finance" 1st-3rd Sem, Elective
  • LA-gbF-kbF-BK-Ma-2014 Masterprüfung in der kleinen beruflichen Fachrichtung Finanz- und Rechnungswesen, Steuern Profil "Finanzdienstleistungen" in der kleinen beruflichen Fachrichtung Wahlpflichtbereich im Profil "Finanzdienstleistungen" Modul "Behavioral Finance" 1st-3rd Sem, Elective
  • MuU-Ma-2013 Wahlpflichtbereich II Wahlpflichtbereich II B.: Märkte und Unternehmen aus Marktperspektive Modul "Behavioral Finance" 1st-3rd Sem, Elective
  • VWL-Ma-2009-V2013 Wahlpflichtbereich II Modul "Behavioral Finance" 1st-3rd Sem, Elective
Lecture: Behavioral Finance (WIWI‑C1116)
Name in diploma supplement
Behavioral Finance
Organisational Unit
Lecturers
SPW
2
Language
English
Cycle
winter semester
Participants at most
no limit
Preliminary knowledge

See lecture

Contents

See lecture

Literature

See lecture

Teaching concept

The theory, methodology, and concepts from the lecture are applied with case studies, numerical examples, in-class experiments, and additional material. Excerpts from key scientific papers are presented to the students and are discussed together.

Participants
  • BWL-EaF-Ma-2015 Wahlpflichtbereich Modul "Behavioral Finance" 1st-3rd Sem, Elective
  • LA-gbF-kbF-BK-Ma-2014 Masterprüfung in der kleinen beruflichen Fachrichtung Finanz- und Rechnungswesen, Steuern Profil "Finanzdienstleistungen" in der kleinen beruflichen Fachrichtung Wahlpflichtbereich im Profil "Finanzdienstleistungen" Modul "Behavioral Finance" 1st-3rd Sem, Elective
  • MuU-Ma-2013 Wahlpflichtbereich II Wahlpflichtbereich II B.: Märkte und Unternehmen aus Marktperspektive Modul "Behavioral Finance" 1st-3rd Sem, Elective
  • VWL-Ma-2009-V2013 Wahlpflichtbereich II Modul "Behavioral Finance" 1st-3rd Sem, Elective
Exercise: Behavioral Finance (WIWI‑C1117)
Module: Behavioral Finance (WIWI‑M0801)