Is individual trading priced in stocks?

Paul Moon Sub Choi, Joung Hwa Choi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


Individuals have long been suspected of being noise traders. We seek empirical evidence of this and suggest the individual trading weight as a proxy for noise trader risk. Based on a common stock sample of non-financial firms listed on the Korea Stock Exchange, we find that returns are higher for firms that are more densely traded by individual investors controlling for Fama and French's (1993) three factors of market, firm size and valuation, and Carhart's (1997) momentum factor. Furthermore, the excess return of portfolios sorted by the proportion of individual traders is an influential risk characteristic even under bull and bear market conditions. Additionally, tests based on average correlations and principal component analyses reveal that individuals generate systematic noise in the Korean stock market. Lastly, on a cross-country check, the individual trading factor is shown to affect stock returns in Taiwan as well.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)76-92
Number of pages17
JournalJournal of International Money and Finance
StatePublished - Jul 2018


  • Buy-sell imbalance
  • Individual trading weight
  • Noise trader risk
  • Principal component analysis


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