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Anomalous Price Behavior Following Earnings Surprises: Does Representativeness Cause Overreaction?

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  • Michael Kaestner

    (GESEM, Center for Research in Finance, Montpellier University, France)

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    Abstract

    Behavioral Finance aims to explain empirical anomalies by introducing investor psychology as a determinant of asset pricing. This study provides strong evidence that anomalous stock price behavior following earnings announcements is due to a representativeness bias. It investigates current and past earnings surprises and subsequent market reaction for listed US companies over the period 1983-1999. The results suggest that investors overreact to past earnings surprises. As, on average, extreme past surprises are not confirmed by actual earnings figures, they are followed by stock market reactions of the opposite sign. Moreover, the longer the similar earnings surprise series, the higher the subsequent reversal.

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    File URL: http://128.118.178.162/eps/fin/papers/0505/0505018.pdf
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    Bibliographic Info

    Paper provided by EconWPA in its series Finance with number 0505018.

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    Length: 17 pages
    Date of creation: 22 May 2005
    Date of revision: 03 Oct 2005
    Handle: RePEc:wpa:wuwpfi:0505018

    Note: Type of Document - pdf; pages: 17
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    Web page: http://128.118.178.162

    Related research

    Keywords: Behavioral finance; overreaction; representativeness bias; earnings announcements;

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    1. Ikenberry, David & Lakonishok, Josef & Vermaelen, Theo, 1995. "Market underreaction to open market share repurchases," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 39(2-3), pages 181-208.
    2. Cutler, David M & Poterba, James M & Summers, Lawrence H, 1991. "Speculative Dynamics," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 58(3), pages 529-46, May.
    3. Chopra, Navin & Lakonishok, Josef & Ritter, Jay R., 1992. "Measuring abnormal performance : Do stocks overreact?," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 31(2), pages 235-268, April.
    4. De Bondt, Werner F M & Thaler, Richard, 1985. " Does the Stock Market Overreact?," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 40(3), pages 793-805, July.
    5. Ikenberry, David L. & Rankine, Graeme & Stice, Earl K., 1996. "What Do Stock Splits Really Signal?," Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis, Cambridge University Press, vol. 31(03), pages 357-375, September.
    6. Barberis, Nicholas & Shleifer, Andrei & Vishny, Robert, 1998. "A model of investor sentiment," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 49(3), pages 307-343, September.
    7. Lee, Inmoo, 1997. " Do Firms Knowingly Sell Overvalued Equity?," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 52(4), pages 1439-66, September.
    8. Harrison Hong & Jeremy C. Stein, 1997. "A Unified Theory of Underreaction, Momentum Trading and Overreaction in Asset Markets," NBER Working Papers 6324, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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