Tuesday, February 7, 2017

Financial Market History: Reflections on the Past for Investors Today

The CFA Institute Research Foundation and the University of Cambridge Judge Business School just published a long read study "Financial Market History: Reflections on the Past for Investors Today".

The First section "examines what we can learn about the trade-off of risk for return from an extensive analysis of historical returns on equities, bonds, and other assets" and "concludes with an extension to other financial markets."

The Second section "explores the historical evolution of how financial claims are traded."

The Third section "addresses the perception that financial markets are inherently prone to irrational exuberance and bubbles."

The Fourth section "addresses the history of financial innovation."

The Study " concludes with a contribution from Barry Eichengreen, who argues that the research frontier in financial history will be driven by current concerns motivated by the 2008–09 financial crisis. He points to a number of studies that reexamine the historical record on the basis of what we now understand about the role of banks and systemic risk. This research is now possible through low-cost and easily accessible historical data. There is the danger that access to these data may inappropriately frame research questions being asked. He concludes that looking to the past may not of itself allow us to predict what might happen in the future; however, it does allow us to understand the broader historical context and our ability to appreciate what is different about our current circumstances. This important observation helps establish why the study of financial history has such important practical significance in the current economic environment."

Understanding the market is not just for professional advisors and analysts; it is important for the investor.  It is information and factual information drives proper investing.

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