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'Wealth Evolution and Distorted Financial Forecasts.'

Event details of CeNDEF Seminar: Blake LeBaron (Brandeis University)
Date 23 January 2008
Time 11:00 -12:00
Location Roeterseilandcampus - building E

Evolutionary metaphors have been prominent in both economics and finance. They are often used as basic foundations for rational behavior and efficient markets. Theoretically, a mechanism which selects for rational investors actually requires many caveats, and is far from generic.
This paper tests wealth based evolution in a simple, stylized agent-based financial market. The setup borrows extensively from current research in finance that considers optimal behavior with some amount of return predictability. The results confirm that with a homogeneous world of log utility investors wealth will converge onto optimal adaptive forecasting parameters. However, in the case of utility functions which differ from log, wealth selection alone converges to parameters which are economically far from the optimal forecast parameters. This serves as a strong reminder that wealth selection and utility maximization are not the same thing. Therefore, suboptimal financial forecasting strategies may be be difficult to drive out of a market, and may even do quite well for some time.

Roeterseilandcampus - building E

Roetersstraat 11
1018 WB Amsterdam

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