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The Value Spread

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  • Randolph B. Cohen

    (Harvard Business School)

  • Christopher Polk

    (Kellogg School of Management, Northwestern University)

  • Tuomo Vuolteenaho

    (Department of Economics, Harvard University and the NBER)

Abstract

We decompose the cross-sectional variance of firms' book-to-market ratios using both a long U.S. panel and a shorter international panel. In contrast to typical aggregate time-series results, transitory cross-sectional variation in expected 15-year stock returns causes only a relatively small fraction (20 to 25 percent) of the total cross-sectional variance. The remaining dispersion can be explained by expected 15-year profitability and persistence of valuation levels. Furthermore, this fraction appears stable across time and across types of stocks. We also show that the expected return on value-minus-growth strategies is atypically high at times when their spread in book-to-market ratios is wide. Copyright (c) 2003 by the American Finance Association.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by American Finance Association in its journal The Journal of Finance.

Volume (Year): 58 (2003)
Issue (Month): 2 (04)
Pages: 609-642

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Handle: RePEc:bla:jfinan:v:58:y:2003:i:2:p:609-642

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  1. Fama, Eugene F & French, Kenneth R, 1995. " Size and Book-to-Market Factors in Earnings and Returns," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, American Finance Association, vol. 50(1), pages 131-55, March.
  2. Fama, Eugene F & French, Kenneth R, 1996. " Multifactor Explanations of Asset Pricing Anomalies," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, American Finance Association, vol. 51(1), pages 55-84, March.
  3. Fama, Eugene F. & French, Kenneth R., 1993. "Common risk factors in the returns on stocks and bonds," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 33(1), pages 3-56, February.
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