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Dynamic short-sale constraints, price limits, and price dynamics

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  • Tse-Chun Lin
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    Abstract

    Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to take advantage of a natural experiment in Taiwan to test the effect of short-sales constraints on price dynamics. Design/methodology/approach – Since September 1998, short-selling is banned at a price below the close price of the previous trading day. The new rule creates unique daily dynamics of short-sales constraints. The paper employs a difference-in-difference method to evaluate whether the short-sales constraint rule plays an important role in the price dynamics. Findings – The results show that stock prices react to information in a way similar to if short-selling was not banned. This is in line with the implication of a rational expectation framework like Diamond and Verrecchia. Research limitations/implications – The paper has implications on the short selling bans in the 2008/2009 credit crisis and the European debt crisis because the bans are public information as those in this setting. The rational agents in the market could incorporate the bans into price beliefs which could lead to the ineffectiveness of the policy. The short-sales constraints may be widely imposed in the crisis but they are not the effective tools to alleviate downward price pressures. Practical implications – The results suggest that the effort of the government to boost stock price by imposing short sales constraints will not be effective if rational investors take the constraints into account while forming their beliefs. Originality/value – Unlike existing short-sales constraint proxies like short interest or lending fees, the dynamic constraints do not suffer from endogeneity. Moreover, the constraints are public information and thus ideal for testing the rational expectation models, in which investors have to be aware of the level of the constraints.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by Emerald Group Publishing in its journal International Journal of Managerial Finance.

    Volume (Year): 8 (2012)
    Issue (Month): 3 ()
    Pages: 256-279

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    Handle: RePEc:eme:ijmfpp:v:8:y:2012:i:3:p:256-279

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    Web page: http://www.emeraldinsight.com

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    Postal: Emerald Group Publishing, Howard House, Wagon Lane, Bingley, BD16 1WA, UK
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    Related research

    Keywords: Financial markets; Price delay; Price dynamics; Price limits; Short-sale constraints; Stock prices; Taiwan;

    References

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    1. Geczy, Christopher C. & Musto, David K. & Reed, Adam V., 2002. "Stocks are special too: an analysis of the equity lending market," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 66(2-3), pages 241-269.
    2. Ofek, Eli & Richardson, Matthew & Whitelaw, Robert F., 2004. "Limited arbitrage and short sales restrictions: evidence from the options markets," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 74(2), pages 305-342, November.
    3. Arturo Bris & William N. Goetzmann & Ning Zhu, 2004. "Efficiency and the Bear: Short Sales and Markets around the World," Yale School of Management Working Papers ysm15, Yale School of Management.
    4. Ekkehart Boehmer & Charles M. Jones & Xiaoyan Zhang, 2008. "Which Shorts Are Informed?," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 63(2), pages 491-527, 04.
    5. Jones, Charles M. & Lamont, Owen A., 2002. "Short-sale constraints and stock returns," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 66(2-3), pages 207-239.
    6. Kim, Kenneth & Rhee, S Ghon, 1997. " Price Limit Performance: Evidence from the Tokyo Stock Exchange," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 52(2), pages 885-99, June.
    7. Nagel, Stefan, 2005. "Short sales, institutional investors and the cross-section of stock returns," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 78(2), pages 277-309, November.
    8. Paul A. Gompers & Andrew Metrick, 1998. "Institutional Investors and Equity Prices," NBER Working Papers 6723, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    9. Senchack, A. J. & Starks, Laura T., 1993. "Short-Sale Restrictions and Market Reaction to Short-Interest Announcements," Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis, Cambridge University Press, vol. 28(02), pages 177-194, June.
    10. Karl B. Diether & Kuan-Hui Lee & Ingrid M. Werner, 2009. "Short-Sale Strategies and Return Predictability," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 22(2), pages 575-607, February.
    11. Brad M. Barber & Yi-Tsung Lee & Yu-Jane Liu & Terrance Odean, 2009. "Just How Much Do Individual Investors Lose by Trading?," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 22(2), pages 609-632, February.
    12. Saffi, Pedro & Sigurdson, Kari, 2008. "Price efficiency and short selling," IESE Research Papers D/748, IESE Business School.
    13. Diamond, Douglas W. & Verrecchia, Robert E., 1987. "Constraints on short-selling and asset price adjustment to private information," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 18(2), pages 277-311, June.
    14. Karl B. Diether & Kuan-Hui Lee & Ingrid M. Werner, 2009. "It's SHO Time! Short-Sale Price Tests and Market Quality," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 64(1), pages 37-73, 02.
    15. Boehmer, Ekkehart & Huszar, Zsuzsa R. & Jordan, Bradford D., 2010. "The good news in short interest," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 96(1), pages 80-97, April.
    16. Hemang Desai & K. Ramesh & S. Ramu Thiagarajan & Bala V. Balachandran, 2002. "An Investigation of the Informational Role of Short Interest in the Nasdaq Market," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 57(5), pages 2263-2287, October.
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