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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. 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.
    2. Utpal Bhattacharya & Hazem Daouk, 2002. "The World Price of Insider Trading," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 57(1), pages 75-108, 02.
    3. Beck, Thorsten & Demirguc-Kunt, Asli & Levine, Ross, 1999. "A new database on financial development and structure," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2146, The World Bank.
    4. Sanford J. Grossman & Oliver D. Hart, 1982. "Corporate Financial Structure and Managerial Incentives," NBER Chapters, in: The Economics of Information and Uncertainty, pages 107-140 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    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. Ausubel, Lawrence M, 1990. "Insider Trading in a Rational Expectations Economy," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 80(5), pages 1022-41, December.
    8. 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.
    9. Jeffrey Wurgler, 1999. "Financial Markets And The Allocation Of Capital," Yale School of Management Working Papers ysm123, Yale School of Management, revised 01 Mar 2001.
    10. 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.
    11. Shleifer, Andrei & Vishny, Robert W., 1986. "Large Shareholders and Corporate Control," Scholarly Articles 3606237, Harvard University Department of Economics.
    12. Benabou, R. & Laroque, G., 1989. "Using Privileged Information To Manipulate Markets: Insiders, Gurus, And Credibility," Working papers 513, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
    13. Shin, Jhinyoung, 1996. "The Optimal Regulation of Insider Trading," Journal of Financial Intermediation, Elsevier, vol. 5(1), pages 49-73, January.
    14. Hayne E. Leland., 1990. "Insider Trading: Should It Be Prohibited?," Research Program in Finance Working Papers RPF-195, University of California at Berkeley.
    15. 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.
    16. 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.
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    Cited by:
    1. Kan Li & Randall Morck & Fan Yang & Bernard Yeung, 2003. "Firm-Specific Variation and Openness in Emerging Markets," William Davidson Institute Working Papers Series 2003-623, William Davidson Institute at the University of Michigan.
    2. 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.
    3. Lopez-de-Silanes, Florencio, 2004. "A survey of securities laws and enforcement," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3405, The World Bank.

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