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The Halloween effect: Trick or treat?

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  • Haggard, K. Stephen
  • Witte, H. Douglas
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    Abstract

    Research documents higher stock returns in November through April than for the rest of the year. This anomaly is known as the "Halloween effect" and results in the following trading rule: sell stocks in early May, invest in T-bills, and re-invest in stocks on Halloween. In contrast to recent studies, we show that the Halloween effect is robust to consideration of outliers and the "January effect." Additionally, we show that investing in a "Halloween portfolio" provides risk-adjusted returns in excess of buy and hold equity returns even after consideration of transaction costs.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by Elsevier in its journal International Review of Financial Analysis.

    Volume (Year): 19 (2010)
    Issue (Month): 5 (December)
    Pages: 379-387

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    Handle: RePEc:eee:finana:v:19:y:2010:i:5:p:379-387

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    Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/inca/620166

    Related research

    Keywords: Anomalies Market efficiency Calendar;

    References

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    1. Oliver Ledoit & Michael Wolf, 2008. "Robust Performance Hypothesis Testing with the Sharpe Ratio," IEW - Working Papers 320, Institute for Empirical Research in Economics - University of Zurich.
    2. Rozeff, Michael S. & Kinney, William Jr., 1976. "Capital market seasonality: The case of stock returns," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 3(4), pages 379-402, October.
    3. David H. Cutler & James M. Poterba & Lawrence H. Summers, 1988. "What Moves Stock Prices?," Working papers 487, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
    4. Keim, Donald B., 1983. "Size-related anomalies and stock return seasonality : Further empirical evidence," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 12(1), pages 13-32, June.
    5. Jonathan Ingersoll & Ivo Welch, 2007. "Portfolio Performance Manipulation and Manipulation-proof Performance Measures," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 20(5), pages 1503-1546, 2007 17.
    6. Sauer, Raymond D, et al, 1988. "Hold Your Bets: Another Look at the Efficiency of the Gambling Market for National Football League Games: Comment," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 96(1), pages 206-13, February.
    7. Lucey, Brian M & Zhao, Shelly, 2008. "Halloween or January? Yet another puzzle," International Review of Financial Analysis, Elsevier, vol. 17(5), pages 1055-1069, December.
    8. Galai, Dan & Kedar-Levy, Haim & Schreiber, Ben Z., 2008. "Seasonality in outliers of daily stock returns: A tail that wags the dog?," International Review of Financial Analysis, Elsevier, vol. 17(5), pages 784-792, December.
    9. Andrews, Donald W K, 1991. "Heteroskedasticity and Autocorrelation Consistent Covariance Matrix Estimation," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 59(3), pages 817-58, May.
    10. Sven Bouman & Ben Jacobsen, 2002. "The Halloween Indicator, "Sell in May and Go Away": Another Puzzle," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 92(5), pages 1618-1635, December.
    11. Edwin Maberly & Raylene Pierce, 2003. "The Halloween Effect and Japanese Equity Prices: Myth or Exploitable Anomaly," Asia-Pacific Financial Markets, Springer, vol. 10(4), pages 319-334, December.
    12. Sidney B. Wachtel, 1942. "Certain Observations on Seasonal Movements in Stock Prices," The Journal of Business, University of Chicago Press, vol. 15, pages 184.
    13. Jobson, J D & Korkie, Bob M, 1981. "Performance Hypothesis Testing with the Sharpe and Treynor Measures," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 36(4), pages 889-908, September.
    14. Ben Jacobsen & Nuttawat Visaltanachoti, 2009. "The Halloween Effect in U.S. Sectors," The Financial Review, Eastern Finance Association, vol. 44(3), pages 437-459, 08.
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