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Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1807/11187

Title: Information in Financial Markets
Authors: Chang, Bin
Advisor: Booth, Laurence
Department: Management
Keywords: information asymmetry
asset pricing
Issue Date: 30-Jul-2008
Abstract: This thesis studies information in financial markets from three perspectives: the role of information asymmetry in alleviating dividend payers’ seasoned equity offering (SEO) announcement returns, the leading behavior of equity analysts who collect and process information, and the pricing of productivity-related information. More specifically, Chapter 1 studies whether the market reacts less negatively to dividend payers’ SEO announcements. Using US data from 1975 to 2002, I find that prior to SEO announcement dates, dividend payers have less information asymmetries than non-dividend payers. This difference was not large before the mid-1980s, but increased dramatically since then. This finding, together with the disappearing dividend puzzle documented in Fama and French (2001), suggests that a firm’s dividend status was not an important signal for SEOs prior to the mid-1980s, but became important since then. The market reacts less negatively to dividend payers’ SEO announcements since the mid-1980s. Chapter 2 studies equity analysts’ leading behavior in equity recommendations. I develop a measure of leading recommendations based on the observation that other recommendations move towards those of the leader. I find that analysts who are more likely to lead are past leaders, past All-American stars, analysts from large brokerage houses, and analysts with fewer recommendations. I find that the market reacts more strongly to recommendations of leaders and leaders are less likely to be terminated from their jobs. Chapter 3 examines the link between productivity and the cross-section of security returns. The CAPM and CCAPM have had problems finding empirical validations. In contrast, by creating factor mimicking portfolios with respect to productivity, I introduce a stock market factor that mimics the driving force behind the CCAPM. First, I find that the productivity factor affects the overall market return and that on average it contributes 0.75 to 2.41 percent annually, for the range of productivity factors I construct. Further, I show that productivity is priced even when the market excess return and factors based on size and book-to-market are included in standard asset pricing tests. However, the market excess return and the book-to-market factor still explain asset returns.
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/1807/11187
Appears in Collections:Doctoral
Joseph L. Rotman School of Management - Doctoral theses

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