FDI, Terrorism and the Availability Heuristic for U.S. Investors before and after 9/11

Working paper

06-09-13 |

We record the existence of an availability heuristic that is reflected in disaster myopia of U.S. investors and exists prior to the attacks of 9/11. We argue that this is fueled by an aggregate experience hypothesis effect, resulting in a pronounced increase in the sensitivity of U.S. stock prices to terrorist attacks on foreign soil. After 9/11, stock prices react proportionally to the size of an attack and the share of FDI stock held in the region by the sector in which firms operate. This effect, non-existent prior to 2002, has become increasingly strong in recent years. 


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