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A Comparative Empirical Investigation of Agency and Market Theories of Insider Trading

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  • Laura Beny

    (University of Michigan)

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    Abstract

    The paper summarizes various agency cost and market theories of insider trading propounded over the course of the perennial law and economics debate over insider trading. The paper then suggests three testable hypotheses regarding the relationship between insider trading laws and several measures of financial performance. Using international data and alternative regression specifications, the paper finds that more stringent insider trading laws and enforcement are generally associated with greater ownership dispersion, greater stock price accuracy and greater stock market liquidity. This set of findings provides empirical support to theoretical arguments in favor of more stringent insider trading legislation and enforcement.

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    File URL: http://law.bepress.com/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1003&context=umichlwps
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    Bibliographic Info

    Paper provided by University of Michigan John M. Olin Center for Law & Economics in its series University of Michigan John M. Olin Center for Law & Economics Working Paper Series with number umichlwps-1003.

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    Handle: RePEc:bep:uomlwp:umichlwps-1003

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    Web page: http://www.law.umich.edu/

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    1. Beck, T.H.L. & Demirgüç-Kunt, A. & Levine, R., 2000. "A new database on financial development and structure," Open Access publications from Tilburg University urn:nbn:nl:ui:12-3125518, Tilburg University.
    2. Shin, Jhinyoung, 1996. "The Optimal Regulation of Insider Trading," Journal of Financial Intermediation, Elsevier, vol. 5(1), pages 49-73, January.
    3. Leland, Hayne E, 1992. "Insider Trading: Should It Be Prohibited?," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 100(4), pages 859-87, August.
    4. Benabou, R. & Laroque, G., 1988. "Using Privileged Information To Manipulate Markets: Insiders, Gurus And Credibility," Papers 19, Princeton, Woodrow Wilson School - Discussion Paper.
    5. Stoll, Hans R, 1989. " Inferring the Components of the Bid-Ask Spread: Theory and Empirical Tests," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 44(1), pages 115-34, March.
    6. Amihud, Yakov & Mendelson, Haim, 1986. "Asset pricing and the bid-ask spread," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 17(2), pages 223-249, December.
    7. Randall Morck & Bernard Yeung & Wayne Yu, 1999. "The Information Content of Stock Markets: Why Do Emerging Markets Have Synchronous Stock Price Movements?," Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers 1879, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
    8. Shleifer, Andrei & Vishny, Robert W., 1986. "Large Shareholders and Corporate Control," Scholarly Articles 3606237, Harvard University Department of Economics.
    9. Wurgler, Jeffrey, 2000. "Financial markets and the allocation of capital," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 58(1-2), pages 187-214.
    10. Kenneth Arrow, 1962. "Economic Welfare and the Allocation of Resources for Invention," NBER Chapters, in: The Rate and Direction of Inventive Activity: Economic and Social Factors, pages 609-626 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    11. Sanford Grossman & Oliver Hart, . "Corporate Financial Structure and Managerial Incentives," Rodney L. White Center for Financial Research Working Papers 21-79, Wharton School Rodney L. White Center for Financial Research.
    12. Ausubel, Lawrence M, 1990. "Insider Trading in a Rational Expectations Economy," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 80(5), pages 1022-41, December.
    13. Bhattacharya, Utpal & Daouk, Hazem & Jorgenson, Brian & Kehr, Carl-Heinrich, 2000. "When an event is not an event: the curious case of an emerging market," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 55(1), pages 69-101, January.
    14. Pagano, Marco & Roell, Ailsa, 1996. " Transparency and Liquidity: A Comparison of Auction and Dealer Markets with Informed Trading," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 51(2), pages 579-611, June.
    15. Tarun Khanna & Krishna Palepu, 1999. "Emerging Market Business Groups, Foreign Investors, and Corporate Governance," NBER Working Papers 6955, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    16. Glosten, Lawrence R. & Harris, Lawrence E., 1988. "Estimating the components of the bid/ask spread," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 21(1), pages 123-142, May.
    17. Utpal Bhattacharya & Hazem Daouk, 2002. "The World Price of Insider Trading," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 57(1), pages 75-108, 02.
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    Cited by:
    1. Lopez-de-Silanes, Florencio, 2004. "A survey of securities laws and enforcement," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3405, The World Bank.
    2. Kan Li & Randall Morck & Fan Yang & Bernard Yeung, 2004. "Firm-Specific Variation and Openness in Emerging Markets," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 86(3), pages 658-669, August.
    3. Art Durnev & Kan Li & Randall Mørck & Bernard Yeung, 2004. "Capital markets and capital allocation: Implications for economies in transition," The Economics of Transition, The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, vol. 12(4), pages 593-634, December.

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