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Do Accounting and Finance Master’s Students Apply Prospect Theory?

Sciprofile linkMaria Teresa V. D. Alves
Published: 30 January 2020
Revista CEA , Volume 6, pp 45-69; doi:10.22430/24223182.1466

Abstract: This study aims to question the assumptions of prospect theory using a sample of students enrolled in a master’s course on accounting and finance at a Portuguese polytechnic institution. Such theory has stood out among others developed in the field of Behavioural Finance due to the debate and investigation it has generated. To achieve this aim, we applied a questionnaire four consecutive years (2012–2015). The instrument included a set of alternative response questions that seek to unveil respondents’ preferences regarding the situations they were presented with. Bibliographic and descriptive research was carried out and the results were compared with those obtained by other authors but they were not always consistent. Thus, the isolation effect was confirmed; the reflection effect was almost always confirmed; and the certainty effect was not always confirmed. Regarding attitude toward risk, the assumptions of risk aversion, and importance given to changes in wealth (at the expense of wealth states), our results are in line with those obtained by said authors. Hence, this study contributes to support prospect theory with its results and the confirmation of the isolation effect.
Keywords: finance / assumptions / authors / prospect theory / accounting / MASTER / wealth / Confirmed

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