Bond Ratings Matter: Evidence from the Lehman Brothers Index Rating Redefinition
AbstractThe 2005 inclusion of Fitch ratings in the Lehman composite index ratings provides a quasi-natural experiment to identify rating-based market segmentation in the corporate bond market. Split-rated bonds with favorable Fitch rating that were mechanically upgraded to investment-grade status exhibit abnormal returns and order flows, whether or not they enter the Lehman investment-grade index itself. An asymmetric impact of favorable Fitch ratings on bonds around the HY-IG boundary whose index rating did not initially change suggests that mechanical changes in future index rating transition probabilities also affect bond pricing. Our results highlight the importance of rating-based industry norms and practices for market segmentation, in addition to rating-based regulation.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 9108.
Date of creation: Aug 2012
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Find related papers by JEL classification:
- G12 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Asset Pricing; Trading Volume; Bond Interest Rates
- G14 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Information and Market Efficiency; Event Studies; Insider Trading
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- Opp, Christian C. & Opp, Marcus M. & Harris, Milton, 2013. "Rating agencies in the face of regulation," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 108(1), pages 46-61.
- Matthias Efing, 2013. "Bank Capital Regulation with an Opportunistic Rating Agency," CESifo Working Paper Series 4267, CESifo Group Munich.
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