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Herd on the Street: Informational Inefficiencies in a Market with Short-Term Speculation

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  • Kenneth A. Froot
  • David S. Scharfstein
  • Jeremy C. Stein

Abstract

Standard models of informed speculation suggest that traders try to learn information that others do not have. This result implicitly relies on the assumption that speculators have long horizons, i.e, can hold the asset forever. By contrast, we show that if speculators have short horizons, they may herd on the same information, trying to learn what other informed traders also know. There can be multiple herding equilibria, and herding speculators may even choose to study information that is completely unrelated to fundamentals. These equilibria are informationally inefficient.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 3250.

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Date of creation: Feb 1990
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Publication status: published as Journal of Finance, Vol. 47, pp. 1461-84 September 1992
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:3250

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  1. Stein, Jeremy C, 1989. "Efficient Capital Markets, Inefficient Firms: A Model of Myopic Corporate Behavior," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 104(4), pages 655-69, November.
  2. Scharfstein, David. & Stein, Jeremy C., 1988. "Herd behavior and investment," Working papers WP 2062-88., Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Sloan School of Management.
  3. Bengt Holmstrom & I. Ricard & Joan Costa, 1984. "Managerial Incentives and Capital Management," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 729, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
  4. Sanford J Grossman & Joseph E Stiglitz, 1997. "On the Impossibility of Informationally Efficient Markets," Levine's Working Paper Archive 1908, David K. Levine.
  5. Kyle, Albert S, 1985. "Continuous Auctions and Insider Trading," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 53(6), pages 1315-35, November.
  6. J. Bradford De Long & Andrei Shleifer & Lawrence H. Summers & Robert J. Waldmann, 1987. "The Economic Consequences of Noise Traders," NBER Working Papers 2395, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Narayanan, M P, 1985. "Observability and the Payback Criterion," The Journal of Business, University of Chicago Press, vol. 58(3), pages 309-23, July.
  8. Verrecchia, Robert E, 1982. "Information Acquisition in a Noisy Rational Expectations Economy," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 50(6), pages 1415-30, November.
  9. Hellwig, Martin F., 1980. "On the aggregation of information in competitive markets," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 22(3), pages 477-498, June.
  10. Tirole, Jean, 1982. "On the Possibility of Speculation under Rational Expectations," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 50(5), pages 1163-81, September.
  11. Pagano, Marco, 1989. "Endogenous Market Thinness and Stock Price Volatility," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 56(2), pages 269-87, April.
  12. Stein, Jeremy C, 1987. "Informational Externalities and Welfare-Reducing Speculation," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 95(6), pages 1123-45, December.
  13. Katz, Michael L & Shapiro, Carl, 1985. "Network Externalities, Competition, and Compatibility," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 75(3), pages 424-40, June.
  14. Joseph Farrell & Garth Saloner, 1984. "Standardization, Compatibility and Innovation," Working papers 345, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
  15. Bulow, Jeremy I & Geanakoplos, John D & Klemperer, Paul D, 1985. "Multimarket Oligopoly: Strategic Substitutes and Complements," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 93(3), pages 488-511, June.
  16. Shleifer, Andrei & Vishny, Robert W, 1990. "Equilibrium Short Horizons of Investors and Firms," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 80(2), pages 148-53, May.
  17. Olivier J. Blanchard & Mark W. Watson, 1982. "Bubbles, Rational Expectations and Financial Markets," NBER Working Papers 0945, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  18. Cooper, Russell & John, Andrew, 1988. "Coordinating Coordination Failures in Keynesian Models," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 103(3), pages 441-63, August.
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