behavioral Finance

Time: May 21 - 25, 2018  

Place: Helsinki, Aalto University School of Business, Chydenia Building

Instructor: Professor Markku Kaustia (Aalto University)

NFN Travel Grant: NFN offers travel stipends to PhD students in finance who come from one of the NFN member institutions, located outside of Finland. To apply for a travel stipend, please use this this form (rtf), and send the application to nfn (at)

Lectures: 20 h of lectures. (20 x 45 minutes)

Please note the change in teaching time on Friday, May 25, marked in bold below.

Monday 21.5. 10:30 - 12:00
13:30 - 15:00
G-111, Chydenia Building
Tuesday 22.5. 10:30 - 12:00
13:30 - 15:00
G-111, Chydenia Building
Wednesday 23.5. 10:30 - 12:00
13:30 - 15:00
G-111, Chydenia Building
Thursday 24.5. 10:30 - 12:00
13:30 - 15:00
G-111, Chydenia Building
Friday 25.5. 10:00 - 12:00
2:45 - 13:45
G-111, Chydenia Building


Learning Goal and Objectives: Behavioral Finance is an approach to the analysis of asset prices, corporate finance, and financial decision-making in general, that relaxes some key assumptions of neoclassical financial economics. Namely, it considers a larger class of objective functions, not always compatible with expected utility. Second, it entertains the possibility that expectations are sometimes biased, and not updated in a Bayesian manner. Third, it considers how various financial market frictions can form strong 'limits to arbitrage'. This course is designed to introduce doctoral students to these concepts, and to support them in developing behavioral research ideas of their own. 

Syllabus: PDF

Access to the articles is subject to your home institutions' subsciptions to the databases. If you have a problem with accessing the articles, please contact GSF office gsf @ for advice. 

Lecture Notes: PDF

Password for opening the course material will be e-mailed to the participants.

Grading: The grading is based on three parts (a written exam, a term paper and a classroom activity). The total points of this course are 100. In order to pass the course one needs at least 40% of points (i.e. 40 points). In addition, one has to get at least 40% of the points from the written exam.

  • a written exam (60% weight)
  • a term paper (30% weight)
  • a classroom activity (10% weight)

Deadline: August 10, 2018. Please return the term paper directly to Professor Kaustia by e-mail. Please respect the deadline promptly. 

Examination date and time: Monday, June 4, 2018 at 9:00-12:00. Please register for the exam through this link. If you wish to take the exam in your home university (other than GSF member university), please see instructions below.

Examination places:

  • In Helsinki: Aalto University School of Business, Chydenia Building, Room G-109
  • In Oulu: University of Oulu
  • In Vaasa: University of Vaasa
  • In Lappeenranta: Lappeenranta University of Technology
  • In Turku: Turku School of Economics
  • Other locations: Doctoral students in other universities are requested to inform GSF by sending an e-mail to if they wish to take the exam in their home universities. Please note that the exam must be written in presence of an exam supervisor. Thus, please submit the name of the exam supervisor at least 14 days before the examination. The exam can also be taken abroad where suitable exam supervision can be arranged. Possible payment and arrangements for supervision should be made by the student. In case you wish to take the exam abroad, please contact GSF by sending an e-mail to at least 14 days before the examination. 

Credit units: 6 ECTS cr.

List of Participants: PDF

Participants: Doctoral students in finance. The course is also open for KATAJA as well as FDPE students with sufficient background in finance and/or economics. The course is also open for foreign doctoral students given that there is space in the course.

Registration / Application 

  • Doctoral students of GSF and FDPE: Please register through this link.
  • Doctoral students in related fields and doctoral students at foreign universities: Application form can be found here: PDF file or Word file. Please, send in addition to your complete contact information, a report on the status of your doctoral studies, and a brief CV. Please ask also your thesis advisor to send us a short letter of recommendation by-email. All the required documents should be sent by e-mail to


 The deadline for registering in this course is May 2, 2018. All students will be informed of their acceptance soon after the deadline.