Blah blah high returns. Blah blah no risk. Blah blah blah guaranteed!’ : A study of what financial institutions base their portfolio creation on for customers and the relationship between the different financial institutions in the same line of business f

University essay from Umeå universitet/Handelshögskolan vid Umeå universitet; Umeå universitet/Handelshögskolan vid Umeå universitet


Why do people invest? People are insecure about their future welfare and aim for future guaranteed cash flows. To give ourselves a more thorough introduction to investments we decided to write our bachelor-thesis within the area of finance. This thesis will combine financial institutions and investments. It is a topic repeatedly discussed in the media and a study carried out in Sweden showed that in 2003, 80% of the population were shareholders.

When trading with stocks and shares there is risk involved that can be defined as the volatility in the cash flow of an investment. A portfolio is a collection of securities that an investor has placed capital in. In order to minimise the risk of the portfolio, the investor can diversify his or her portfolio, which involves investing in different securities in order to minimise risk. Institutional Theory will help us to see how these financial institutions interact with each other and what internal and external factors may influence their behaviour. Institutional investors; such as banks, are seen as large actors on the financial markets as they gain more and more control over the management of equities. It is necessary that intermediaries take care of their customers and inform them thoroughly about the rules of the investment game. With this as a background we felt it would be interesting to investigate the following problem.

On what basis do financial institutions create their customers’ portfolios and is the process the same across the branch as a whole?

In order to find an answer to this question; we have done a qualitative study with an overall positivistic influence. The study is based upon an analysis of the empirical material; collected through interviews with three financial institutions, grounded in theory in order to answer our specific question.

From the information gathered we understood that the first information financial institutions gather is personal information about the investors, which is needed to get a picture and an understanding about their client. We have also learned how important it is to understand risk, as it is the risk that will determine the composition of the portfolio for the investor. We could see with the help of the institutional theory that there is little space for differentiation and can therefore say that the financial institutions work in the same way in the advising of their clients and for the composition of their client’s portfolio.

Our results show that the basis for the creation of portfolios is more or less the same across the branches as a whole. The service given may differ, due to the competence and knowledge level of employees, between institutions but the end product is similar in all aspects.

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