Call for papers: Constructing Financial Risk – Key Perspectives and Debates workshop (London, April 13th)
February 4, 2015
January 24, 2015
A group of computer scientists, working mostly at Princeton, have developed a class to teach the nitty gritty of cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin. To sign up for a free version of the course online, starting February 16, see here.
January 20, 2015
A remarkable paradox pervades executive education in finance. Most courses provide rigorous training in formal models and economic theory, which is certainly a basic condition to participate in the capital markets. But as everyone who has ever stepped into a trading floor knows, getting ahead in a bank or fund typically entails a completely different set of skills: understanding the social networks at work, the culture of the company, or how to communicate with bosses and investors. This is even more so in a post-crisis world with new and growing regulatory requirements. Hence the paradox: instead of focusing on the soft skills that make or break an executive career, finance courses continue to teach the technical.
Given this gap, the LSE is launching a new Executive Summer School in Leadership in Financial Institutions. I am very pleased to serve as Instructor and Course Leader. Other instructors include heavyweights from the LSE such as Michael Power (LSE Accounting), Paul Willman (LSE Management), Sandy Pepper (LSE Management) and Connson Locke (LSE OB). Guest speakers will complement the academic sessions by lending their insights about best practices in the City of London.
The course aims at providing participants with the tools to lead and manage employees in financial organizations in an environment with unprecedented change. This change not only includes political risks such as last week’s fluctuations of the Swiss franc, but also regulatory trends such as changing European regulations on bonus caps.
The course is also designed to be an integral experience for participants. They will be expected to attend to lectures at our London campus, discuss case studies, gain experience with industry guest presenters and relate to the best practices with a field visit. It aims to explore three types of perspectives: a cultural perspective, a psychological perspective and a social network perspective that examines the role of financial intermediaries.
Participants can expect to:
• Access to cutting-edge research in a financial context on networking, managing through culture and effective communication.
• Learn how to translate leading management frameworks in areas such as compensation and promotion.
• Acquire experience with new tools to handle finance-specific problems such as a bonus-centric culture, the risks posed by financial models, and the challenges posed by global-scale operations.
• Engage with best practices in the City of London across trends such as responding to regulation, cultural transformation, and responsible investment.
• Improve their decision making capabilities through learning how to identify behavioural biases within themselves and their team/ organization.
For those interested in taking their financial career to the next level, this might be the place. For more information, dates and a longer description, see here. And for even more information, just drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org
December 13, 2014
Senator Elizabeth Warren speaks out on the power of the Citigroup lobby in Washington. See it here on HuffPo.
December 10, 2014
The Institute for Money, Technology and Financial Inclusion is live streaming its annual conference from California at this link. The event is being held today and tomorrow. On Twitter at #imtfi
What causes asset price bubbles? The paper below (just released) by Sheen Levine and David Stark looks into the issue in an original way. Findings: ethnic homogeneity promotes conformity and leads to misplacing; diversity disrupts conformity and leads to better information processing.
Here’s the longer summary:
In this paper from the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Sheen Levine and I (together with other co-authors) examine a prominent market failure: price bubbles. We propose that bubbles are affected by ethnic homogeneity in the market and can be thwarted by diversity. Using experimental markets in Southeast Asia and North America, we find that market prices fit true values 58% better in ethnically diverse markets. In homogenous markets, overpricing is higher and traders’ errors are more correlated than in diverse markets. The findings suggest that homogeneity promotes conformity. Price bubbles arise not only from individual errors or financial conditions, but also from the social context of decision making. Informing public discussion, our findings suggest that ethnic diversity disrupts conformity and leads to better information processing.
Congratulations, Sheen and David!
See here for more information: