Ayesha is an interdisciplinary researcher, with an agenda that spans violence against women, empirical finance, personal finance and financial econometrics. Her work (particularly on KiwiSaver and personal finance) has generated media interest within Aotearoa New Zealand, and you will find her commentary in outlets such as the NZ Herald and stuff.co.nz.
Ayesha is passionate about healthy financial relationships and has ongoing projects exploring the impact of financial and economic abuse in the context of intimate partnerships. This is a critical social issue that must be addressed in NZ and internationally, and her current work aims to give voice to women facing this evasive, invasive and poorly understood form of intimate partner violence.
She is also interested in the personal financial literacy and capability of New Zealanders, including vulnerable populations, and how we might improve the financial fitness of individuals. Poor financial literacy (knowledge of financial concepts) and capability (the ability to use that knowledge to make better decisions) has a significantly negative social and economic impact on a nation, both in terms of the macro economy and individual welfare.
Broadly, her doctoral research focused on the volatility and correlation dynamics of financial assets such as stocks. The near-continuous flow of price and trade data of financial assets presents researchers with opportunities, as well as unique challenges, to capture the return dynamics of these assets individually and as a group. Such models may lead to insights regarding optimal portfolio allocation decisions, information that will directly benefit investors.