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Institutional Investor Sentiment and the Mean-Variance Relationship: Global Evidence

Lookup NU author(s): Wenzhao Wang, Professor Darren DuxburyORCiD



This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License (CC BY-NC-ND).


Although a cornerstone of traditional finance theory, empirical evidence in support of a positive mean-variance relation is far from conclusive, with the behavior of retail investors commonly thought to be one of the root causes of departures from this expected relationship. The behavior of institutional investors, conventionally thought to be sophisticated and rational, has recently come under closer scrutiny, including in relation to investor sentiment. Drawing together these two strands of literature, this paper examines the impact of institutional investor sentiment on the mean-variance relation in six regions, including Asia (excl. Japan), Eastern Europe, Eurozone, Japan, Latin America, and the US, and across thirty-eight markets. Empirical evidence supports the differential impact of institutional investor sentiment on the mean-variance relation (i.e., positive or negative), both across regions and across markets. In particular, for markets with cultural proneness to overreaction and a low level of market integrity institutional investor sentiment tends to distort the risk-return tradeoff.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Wang W, Duxbury D

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Journal of Economic Behavior and Organization

Year: 2021

Volume: 191

Pages: 415-441

Print publication date: 01/11/2021

Online publication date: 06/10/2021

Acceptance date: 22/08/2021

Date deposited: 23/08/2021

ISSN (print): 1067-2681

Publisher: Elsevier BV


DOI: 10.1016/j.jebo.2021.08.029


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