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Why You Should Invest Like a Girl
CNBC.com | October 10, 2011 | 11:34 AM EDT

She adds: “Buffett tends to take less risk. He thinks longer term, and he’s not influenced by peer pressure. He manages his emotions better.”

Testosterone can also create trust issues. In another study, Claremont's Zak conducted an investment game with a group of subjects in which each investor was assured that his or her money would triple. The investment advisors within the game were allowed to return as much or as little money to the investors as they chose — the study was anonymous, and the advisors’ identities wouldn’t be revealed.

The results? “Women return more money than men,” he says. “They’re more trustworthy.”

Beyond that, male investment advisors took it personally if an investor didn’t entrust them with very much money — it raised their testosterone and they reacted by withholding returns. Not so with women. “Women don’t get this hot emotional result,” Zak says. “They’re proportional reciprocators.”

Women’s emotional stability comes partly from oxytocin, a hormone which floods their brains in far larger quantities than men.

“It’s active mostly in emotional areas of the brain, but it’s active in a calming, not an activating way,” says Zak, who has been studying oxytocin for the past decade.

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