Masters of the Stock Market

  • Kristjan Liivamägi
  • Tarvo Vaarmets
  • Tõnn Talpsepp


We analyze how intellectual abilities and education affect investors’ risk-adjusted returns in the stock market. To investigate such effects, we use educational performance measured by standardized exams and the type and specialty of a university degree obtained.  The data used covers one complete business cycle and includes detailed transactions and performance on the national stock exchange for all Estonian individual investors along with their past educational records from a national registry. Controlling for trading style, wealth, experience and variety of educational characteristics, we provide empirical evidence that investors with higher mathematical skills combined with overall high intellectual ability, have higher probability to outperform market. We also show that investors holding higher university degrees or specialize in certain fields achieve higher risk-adjusted return in the stock market.


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Working Papers