survivorship bias

Definition

The tendency for failed companies to be excluded from performance studies due to the fact that they no longer exist. Survivorship bias causes the results of some studies to skew higher because only companies which were successful enough to survive until the end of the period are included. Similarly, mutual fund performance may be misleading due to survivorship bias if the fund family tends to merge or discontinue underperforming funds.

Related Terms

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survivorship look-ahead bias