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Research and Teaching Assistants

Photo: Stolper

Dr. Lukas Brenner

Dr. Lukas Brenner had joined the Behavioral Finance Research Group as an external research assistant in January 2018 and finished his doctoral studies in March 2020. After studying business administration with a major in finance at Reutlingen University of Applied Sciences (ESB) and Purdue University in Indiana, he has been working for the strategy consultancy Bain & Company since October 2015, advising companies in the industrial, banking and insurance sector as well as private equity companies.

  • Inhalt ausklappen Inhalt einklappen ResearchResearch

    How do external influences, which do not emanate directly from the household itself, change the investment decisions and financial behaviour of private households?

    In his cumulative dissertation, Dr. Lukas Brenner examines the effect of various aspects and factors on the investment behavior of private households. The focus of the research is on factors that are usually not actively influenced by the object of study (the private household). In particular, the essays examine influences that come from (i) family and friends (direct social environment), (ii) the consequences of fraud, and (iii) financial advisors.

    What influence do financial contributions from family and friends have on the investment behaviour of private households?

    Two studies conducted as part of the research programme deal with the topic of how financial contributions from family and friends influence the investment behaviour of private households. The first study examines how households that inherit or receive gifts deal with the transferred assets. How does such an inflow influence the financial decisions of households - especially with regard to saving for private retirement provision? Our findings suggest that heirs use some of the money they receive to increase their private pension provision, but there are significant differences between heir households. "Many households will come across the issue of inheritance over time. In Germany in particular, it will be interesting to see whether and how this inflow of funds influences citizens in their financial investment decisions - for example on the capital market or for old-age provision. It will be important for legislators, as well as for financial institutions, to correctly anticipate the financial decisions of thousands of affected households and to set the appropriate course". The second study addresses the issue of how (promised) financial support from the closest social circles influences the investment behaviour of private households. For example, do households that can rely on a social safety net from friends and family take a higher risk on the capital market? Building on current findings in the emerging field of social finance, the study suggests a link between such promised financial support and investment in high-risk asset classes.

    What influence do negative experiences such as (consumer) fraud have on the financial well-being of private households?

    This question is investigated in the study "Consumer Fraud Victimization and Financial Well-Being" in cooperation with Dr. Tobias Meyll (University of Gießen), Prof. Dr. Andreas Walter (University of Gießen) and Prof. Dr. Oscar Stolper. In the context of the financial situation of private households, the study deals with the far-reaching negative consequences of fraud on consumers. How does financial well-being change after an individual has become a victim of fraud? To what extent do the consequences go beyond the purely monetary loss and through what channels does such a negative event have an impact? Our empirical research operates at the interface between household finance, psychology and criminology. Our results suggest that fraud has a significant negative impact on the "financial self-confidence" of victims and therefore has serious, undesirable consequences for (future) financial decisions of individuals.

    The study Consumer Fraud Victimization and Financial Well-Being (Brenner, Meyll, Stolper & Walter, 2020) documents the project and is published in Journal of Economic Psychology (76).

    Do financial advisors influence the risk profile of private clients?

    In collaboration with Prof. Dr. Oscar Stolper, this project investigates the influence of financial advisors on the investment behavior of private households. The central pillar of investment recommendations in standardized financial consulting is the process for the objective derivation of an investor's risk-bearing capacity profile by the financial consultant. This profile should be independent of the advisor and should be derived individually according to the life situation / asset situation as well as preferences and inclinations of the investor. However, findings of the study indicate that financial advisors (strongly) influence the risk profile of investors in the process. As a consequence, this leads to distorted product and investment recommendations by the advisor with far-reaching negative consequences for the investor.

    Furthermore, Lukas Brenner has conducted research together with Dr. Tobias Meyll on the influence of Robo-Advisors. In the study "Robo-advisors: A substitute for human financial advice?" they investigate the connection between Robo-Advisor and the demand for personal customer advice. Findings of the study suggest that Robo-Advisors are considered a valid substitute for personal financial advice.

    The study Robo-advisors: A substitute for human financial advice? (Brenner, Meyll, 2020) documents the project and is published in Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Finance (25).

  • Inhalt ausklappen Inhalt einklappen PublicationsPublications

    Brenner, L./Stolper, O. (2020): Mind the gap: inheritance and inequality in retirement wealth, in: Intergenerational Justice Review 6(2), 63-72. Winner of the 2020 Intergenerational Justice Prize

    Brenner L./Meyll T. (2020): Robo-Advisors: A Substitute for Human Financial Advice?.

    Brenner L./Meyll T./Stolper O./Walter A. (2020): Consumer Fraud Victimization and Financial Well-Being.

Student Assistants

Photo: Privat

 Alexander Becker

Alexander Becker has been working as student assistant since December 2018 until December 2020. After receiving his bachelor’s degree from the University of Bayreuth, he started studying the Master of Business Administration at the Philipps-University Marburg in October 2018.

Photo: Privat

Jasmin Petersohn

Jasmin Petersohn has been working as student assistant since November 2019 until February 2020. She finished her master's degree in Business Administration at Philipps-University in Marburg in September 2020.

Photo: Privat
Oliver Pluhatsch

Oliver Pluhatsch has been working as student assistant since April 2020 until August 2021.