DEFINITION of 'Kurtosis'

A statistical measure used to describe the distribution of observed data around the mean.

It is sometimes referred to as the "volatility of volatility."


Used generally in the statistical field, kurtosis describes trends in charts. A high kurtosis portrays a chart with fat tails and a low, even distribution, whereas a low kurtosis portrays a chart with skinny tails and a distribution concentrated toward the mean.

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