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Hormones and City Traders?
Cambridge Neuroscientist Dr John Coates, pictured right, discusses the role of testosterone in decision making and risk taking behaviour with Claudia Hammond for BBC Radio 4's All in the Mind.
John used to work on Wall Street as a derivatives trader, and during the Dot Com bubble became convinced that he was witnessing hormone surges and slumps in his fellow traders that amounted to clinical levels.
His subsequent research at the University of Cambridge has established the size of the changes in the naturally occurring steroids like testosterone and cortisol changes and he's now trying to demonstrate in the laboratory how these changes actually affect decision making and the willingness to take risks.
Speaking post All in the Mind interview to Cambridge Neuroscience John commented:
"In the past year banks, asset managers, and hedge funds have begun to take an interest in the neurosciences. They want to tap insights from neuroscience and psychology to better understand why the public is so reluctant to engage with financial websites; to see how humans can compete against Black Boxes, the algorithmic trading programs that process a trade in under 10 ms; and to understand how diversity can help smooth their earnings.
Cambridge Neuroscience, given the range of Departments involved, from Experimental Psychology, to Physiology, to Engineering, is well placed to participate in this important development."
To find out more, and listen to the recording, click here.
Posted on 17/11/2010
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