The purpose of this research is to locate, investigate and elucidate the differences in the
financial investment behaviour of two types of investors i.e. the institutional investor and the
private investor, more specifically those based in Ireland. Institutional investors given their
access to resources, established practices, and by the virtue of being a large investing entity has
certain advantages over private individual investors in the market place. The former can take
advantage of algorithms, economies of scale, access to internal analytics, and a larger support
structure both internally and in terms of access to external service providers in order to compete
in the world of investing; the latter however can be more agile, invest for the longer term, and
has a lower risk of investing based on a herd mentality. As much as an algorithm-driven
analytical investment strategy plays an important role in investment planning decision-making,
emotions are a salient and differential component in both kinds of investor’s decisions.
Understanding and quantifying this component is of critical importance to individuals,
organizations and researchers in this field of study. The aim of gaining knowledge on the
differences in their financial investment behaviour will help improve our understanding and
help quantify the extent and role that emotions, herd mentality, and organisational structure
have on investment decisions that are not always made rationally. An aim of this work is to
establish, elucidate and qualify the behavioural tendencies and biases and their link to
associated investment decisions, once informed of such, this will lead to an improved
understanding of investment psychology and relationships and ultimately a better investment
performance. In this research, qualitative analysis is used via interviews to compare and
contrast differences in the responses of the institutional investors vs the individuals as it relates
to different aspects of the study; bias is mitigated by the random sampling of those aspects.
In summary, once investors are informed of the various aspects of this research and its
implications for investment strategy, it will help with the general goal of greater stability in
financial markets by allowing investors take more controlled and informed decisions.
Improving investment emotional intelligence can in the long-run help navigate investment
decisions more efficiently, with greater effectiveness and clarity.