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The Variability of IPO Initial Returns

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  • MICHELLE LOWRY
  • MICAH S. OFFICER
  • G. WILLIAM SCHWERT

Abstract

The monthly volatility of IPO initial returns is substantial, fluctuates dramatically over time, and is considerably larger during "hot" IPO markets. Consistent with IPO theory, the volatility of initial returns is higher for firms that are more difficult to value because of higher information asymmetry. Our findings highlight underwriters' difficulty in valuing companies characterized by high uncertainty, and raise serious questions about the efficacy of the traditional firm-commitment IPO process. One implication of our results is that alternate mechanisms, such as auctions, could be beneficial for firms that value price discovery over the auxiliary services provided by underwriters. Copyright (c) 2010 The American Finance Association.

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File URL: http://www.blackwell-synergy.com/doi/abs/10.1111/j.1540-6261.2009.01540.x
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Bibliographic Info

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

Volume (Year): 65 (2010)
Issue (Month): 2 (04)
Pages: 425-465

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Handle: RePEc:bla:jfinan:v:65:y:2010:i:2:p:425-465

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References

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  1. Ibbotson, Roger G & Jaffe, Jeffrey F, 1975. ""Hot Issue" Markets," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 30(4), pages 1027-42, September.
  2. Malkiel, Burton & Campbell, John & Lettau, Martin & Xu, Yexiao, 2001. "Have Individual Stocks Become More Volatile? An Empirical Exploration of Idiosyncratic Risk," Scholarly Articles 3128707, Harvard University Department of Economics.
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  4. Lowry, Michelle & Schwert, G. William, 2004. "Is the IPO pricing process efficient?," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 71(1), pages 3-26, January.
  5. Megginson, William L & Weiss, Kathleen A, 1991. " Venture Capitalist Certification in Initial Public Offerings," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 46(3), pages 879-903, July.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Çolak, Gönül & Günay, Hikmet, 2011. "Strategic waiting in the IPO markets," Journal of Corporate Finance, Elsevier, vol. 17(3), pages 555-583, June.
  2. Degeorge, François & Derrien, François & Womack, Kent L., 2010. "Auctioned IPOs: The US evidence," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 98(2), pages 177-194, November.
  3. Grammenos, Costas Th. & Papapostolou, Nikos C., 2012. "US shipping initial public offerings: Do prospectus and market information matter?," Transportation Research Part E: Logistics and Transportation Review, Elsevier, vol. 48(1), pages 276-295.
  4. Boehme, Rodney & Çolak, Gönül, 2012. "Primary market characteristics and secondary market frictions of stocks," Journal of Financial Markets, Elsevier, vol. 15(2), pages 286-327.
  5. Liu, Jia & Lister, Roger & Pang, Dong, 2013. "Corporate evolution following initial public offerings in China: A life-course approach," International Review of Financial Analysis, Elsevier, vol. 27(C), pages 1-20.
  6. Yung, Chris & Çolak, Gönül & Wei Wang, 2008. "Cycles in the IPO market," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 89(1), pages 192-208, July.
  7. Agathee, Ushad Subadar & Sannassee, Raja Vinesh & Brooks, Chris, 2012. "The underpricing of IPOs on the Stock Exchange of Mauritius," Research in International Business and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 26(2), pages 281-303.
  8. Karpoff, Jonathan M. & Lee, Gemma & Masulis, Ronald W., 2013. "Contracting under asymmetric information: Evidence from lockup agreements in seasoned equity offerings," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 110(3), pages 607-626.
  9. Zhang, Feng, 2012. "Information precision and IPO pricing," Journal of Corporate Finance, Elsevier, vol. 18(2), pages 331-348.
  10. Cecilia Caglio & Kathleen Weiss Hanley & Jennifer Marietta-Westberg, 2013. "Going public abroad," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 2013-68, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).

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