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Cool women clean up in share stakes Reuters NZ Herald 24-10-98

NEW YORK - Women are -the winners when it comes to investing. Brash men trade their shares 46 per cent more often, but still eam 1.4 per cent less, according to data from a Wall St brokerage. The trend was even more pronounced among unmarried investors. Single men trade 67 per cent more often than single women, but earn 2.3 per cent less. University, of California researchers examined the share investments of 37,664 households from 1991 to last year.

Men opened the accounts in 29,659 households and women in 8005, but "we don't know who made the investment decisions [for married couples" said researcher Terrance Odean.

Overconfldence led all the investors to trade too Much. , 'The stocks they bought underperforined the stocks they sold," Mr Odean said. -"But the men trade more frequently and they lose out'

Hindu castes hold the DNA clues to a startling discovery about human evolution and culture. NZ Herald 24-10-98

LONDON Scientists have uncovered a pattern of genetic differences that underpins the caste system in India. They have foundt that variations in social rank are mirrored in DNA. However the link is not a causal one; genes do not dictate a person's social rank.

Instead, they show that each caste has developed a distinctive genetic profile because there is little intermarriage. This is particularly true for men. Intriguingly womens genes suggest they have some social mobility.

"This work is; exciting because it shows genetics can shed light on more than biology," said Sir Walter Bodmer, ' of, Oxford's Institute of Molecular Medicine in Britain. "It also tells us a lot about our culture." India's, Hindus are stratified into around 2000 castes, each grouped into five ."varnas" that dictate a person's access to education, occupation and status

Marriages between individuals of dfferent varnas are strongly discouraged.

A team led by Michael Bamshad of Utah University studied genetic material from 250 people from 12 different castes in Andhra pradesh state in Southern India.

In particular, they examined their mitochondrial DNA which is inherited only from the mother and the Y-chromosome, which is inherited only from the father.

Their analysis showed that a male's DNA is highly specific to his caste, but with women this phenomenon was less pronounced. With them DNA typical of one caste is sometimes found in adjoining castes. The discovery suggests women on occasion marry men from higher castes, producing children that have their husband's social rank.

The researchers state in Nature "The stratification of the Hindy caste system is driven by women".

Geneticist Dr Steve Jones, of University College, London:. "Now that we can separate differences in female gene patterns from those of men, we have a very powerful tool for analysing past human behaviour."

One example now, being studied by researchers is the impact that Viking raiders had on Britain's genetic heritage 1000 years ago. Did Vildngs bring their families with them on their boat raids and then raise children that intermarried with nativce Britons? Or is the traditional picture of Vikings as male-only rapists and pillagers correct?