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Business Cycles, Financial Crises, and Stock Volatility

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  • G. William Schwert

Abstract

This paper shows that stock volatility increases during recessions and financial crises from 1834-1987. The evidence reinforces the notion that stock prices are an important business cycle indicator. Using two different statistical models for stock volatility, I show that volatility increases after major financial crises. Moreover. stock volatility decreases and stock prices rise before the Fed increases margin requirements. Thus, there is little reason to believe that public policies can control stock volatility. The evidence supports the observation by Black [1976] that stock volatility increases after stock prices fall.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 2957.

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Date of creation: Mar 1990
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Publication status: published as Carnegie-Rochester Conference Series on Public Policy, Vol. 31, pp. 83-125, (1989).
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:2957

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  1. Fama, Eugene F. & French, Kenneth R., 1988. "Dividend yields and expected stock returns," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 22(1), pages 3-25, October.
  2. French, Kenneth R. & Schwert, G. William & Stambaugh, Robert F., 1987. "Expected stock returns and volatility," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 19(1), pages 3-29, September.
  3. Neftci, Salih N, 1984. "Are Economic Time Series Asymmetric over the Business Cycle?," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, University of Chicago Press, vol. 92(2), pages 307-28, April.
  4. Gorton, Gary, 1985. "Bank suspension of convertibility," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 15(2), pages 177-193, March.
  5. Plosser, Charles I. & Schwert*, G. William, 1978. "Money, income, and sunspots: Measuring economic relationships and the effects of differencing," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 4(4), pages 637-660, November.
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