Download Blind Faith: Our Misplaced Trust in the Stock Market and by Edward Winslow PDF

By Edward Winslow

- Over forty percentage of families personal a few type of universal stock

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Extra resources for Blind Faith: Our Misplaced Trust in the Stock Market and Smarter, Safer Ways to Invest

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4 Richard Thayler of the University of Chicago conducted an experiment on human behavior in his classroom. He concluded that people are more willing to take risks and gamble when they’re ahead on a stock. When the investment has dropped in value they become more conservative. Many people have similar feelings when they go to a casino. 5 People hear what they want to hear. During the dot-com frenzy, many investors listened to the analysts projecting everincreasing share prices for Internet companies.

The advent of the Internet makes it possible to have data and information at our fingertips in a matter of seconds. There is so much to absorb that scientists are studying ways humans can deal with the stress of an overworked brain. Preliminary findings suggest that the burnout sensation that comes with information overload results from fatigue in specific brain regions. 19 Metaphorically speaking, as a nation we are suffering from real-time market overload exhaustion. We didn’t have to worry about information overload a century ago.

Another way investors cope with portfolio losses is simply to ignore them. In an article entitled “When It Hurts Too Much to Look,” the Wall Street Journal reported that in good times people enjoy looking at their investment statements, but in bad, many let them pile up unopened and unread. That is because investors are afflicted with loss aversion and come up with elaborate mental constructs, such as “it’s only a paper loss,” to reduce their pain. “Not opening the envelope takes the suspension of disbelief one step further,” says Hersh Shefrin, a professor of finance and economics at Santa Clara University.

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