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Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Copyright © 2010, Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Article Type: Editorial From: Qualitative Research in Financial Markets, Volume 2, Issue 3
Welcome to the third issue of Qualitative Research in Financial Markets (QRFM). In less than two years, the journal has established significant presence in the accounting and finance literature as an outlet for high-quality work of the nature implied in the title and I would again like to thank Emerald staff, colleagues, editorial board members, authors, reviewers and all those who have played a role in enabling this success. One reflection of the interest generated in the journal is that, in addition to the first issue of 2010, two further special issues are in development and accepting submissions: “Islamic banking and finance”, edited by Omar Masood; and “Market liquidity and the impact of the financial crash” edited by Moorad Choudhry. Details of both are available at the journal’s web site. I would of course, be happy to receive suggestions of other areas where special issues might be possible; these play an important role in illustrating the potentiality of qualitative research in providing in-depth analysis of key issues in financial markets from different perspectives and I am keen to support these.
I am delighted to say that this issue of QRFM includes Professor Werner De Bondt’s commissioned piece: “The crisis of 2008 and financial reform”. Developing ideas outlined as part of his plenary session at the Cass event in London last December, Werner provides an exceptionally well thought-out discussion of the recent crisis in financial markets, covering its nature and impact, the behavioural and regulatory causes and a potential way forward. As regards the latter, a seven-point plan is outlined, suggesting that developments in the following areas: (independent) market regulation; transparency; incentives; proprietary trading; capital maintenance; consumer protection and the (re-establishment of) the notion of fiduciary duty are required to facilitate the emergence of a robust and reliable financial market system in the future.
This issue includes two further articles with a high degree of topicality, both of which should be of interest to QRFM readers. In “The perception of tax concessions in retirement savings decisions” Silvia Jordan and Corinna Treisch provide novel evidence about the nature and determinants of de facto retirement decisions. On the basis of more than 20 interviews with private investors and advisers, the authors conclude that practice differs from theory in several important ways; in particular, quantitative tax and return calculations play a lesser role than does informal advice from professionals and others. More generally, the results suggest that multiple rationales and social contexts are particularly important in the decision process. The third paper in this issue, “Islamic banking and customers’ preferences: the case of the UK” by Walid Mansour, Mohamed Ben Abdelhamid, Omar Masood and G.S.K. Niazi details the results of a questionnaire study of UK bank customers (mainly, but not exclusively, Muslim) that attempts to discern the main influences on bank selection choices. While the study finds evidence that the religious orientation of the bank is an important factor, the existence of low service charges actually dominates. In both cases, the importance attached to the factors is not restricted to the Muslim respondents. In contrast, practicalities such as location and parking are seen as being much less important. The authors set the evidence in the context of the strong recent growth in Islamic banking provision in the UK and outline out the implications for banks against this backdrop.