Three Different Ways Synchronization Can Cause Contagion in Financial Markets
13 Pages Posted: 21 Mar 2019
Date Written: February 27, 2019
We introduce tools to capture the dynamics of three different pathways, in which the synchronization of human decision-making could lead to turbulent periods and contagion phenomena in financial markets. The first pathway is caused when stock market indices, seen as a set of coupled integrate-and-fire oscillators, synchronize in frequency. The integrate-and-fire dynamics happens due to “change blindness”, a trait in human decision-making where people have the tendency to ignore small changes, but take action when a large change happens. The second pathway happens due to feedback mechanisms between market performance and the use of certain (decoupled) trading strategies. The third pathway occurs through the effects of communication and its impact on human decision-making. A model is introduced in which financial market performance has an impact on decision-making through communication between people. Conversely, the sentiment created via communication has an impact on financial market performance. The methodologies used are: agent based modeling, models of integrate-and-fire oscillators, and communication models of human decision-making.
Keywords: synchronization, human decision making, decoupling, opinion formation, agent-based modeling
JEL Classification: G, G01, G02
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation