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Lay people beliefs in professional and naïve stock investors’ proneness to judgmental biases.

Journal article
Authors Daniel Peterson
Anders Carlander
Amelie Gamble
Tommy Gärling
Martin Holmén
Published in Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Finance
Volume 5
Pages 27-34
ISSN 2214-6350
Publication year 2015
Published at Department of Psychology
Centre for Finance
Department of Economics, Environmental Economics Unit
Pages 27-34
Language en
Keywords belief, judgmental bias, stock investor, expertise, trust
Subject categories Psychology


We hypothesize that lay people due to over-reliance on expertise have unwarranted beliefs in professional stock investors’ skill, which may be one reason why they trust financial institutions. In order to investigate this hypothesis, survey questions were constructed to measure whether lay people believe professional stock investors differ from naïve stock investors in making more rational and less biased judgments. Study 1 showed that both economics undergraduates (n = 118) and psychology undergraduates (n = 72) believe that professional stock investors are more rational and overconfident than naïve investors, but less optimistically biased, less influenced by affect, and less influenced by others. Similar results were obtained in Study 2 comparing a random population-based sample (n = 178) to a heterogeneous undergraduate sample (n = 186).

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