The endowment, made via the Axa Research Fund – the scientific philanthropy initiative of Axa, founded in 2007 – aims to bring about a better understanding of the recent financial crisis, with a focus on the links between information dissemination, market efficiency and risk.
“Technological advances are revolutionising the way financial markets acquire and process information. Investors can now access vast quantities of data about companies cheaply. This development can help forecast economic trends and also level the playing field, allowing retail investors to learn market news without delay and to examine expert analyses,” Peress wrote.
“The information revolution is also creating challenges, notably inducing a ‘speed race’ among competitors to gain milliseconds of advantage over their peers while making little or no apparently beneficial social contributions – and increasing the risk of making hasty mistakes.”
The Axa Research Fund previously granted €14m to 31 research projects in the field of financial risk, at institutions including management school HEC Paris, Italy’s Bocconi University and Istituto Einaudi per l’Economia e la Finanza, and the Barcelona Graduate School of Economics.
Peress was twice awarded the Smith Breeden Prize for best paper published in The Journal of Finance between 2009 and 2012. He specialises in the impact of data on financial markets.