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Earnings and Expected Returns

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  • Owen Lamont

    (Graduate School of Business, University of Chicago and NBER)

Abstract

The aggregate dividend payout ratio forecasts excess returns on both stocks and corporate bonds in postwar U.S. data. High dividends forecast high returns. High earnings forecast low returns. The correlation of earnings with business conditions gives them predictive power for returns; they contain information about future returns that is not captured by other variables. Dividends and earnings contribute substantial explanatory power at short horizons. For forecasting long-horizon returns, however, only (scaled) stock prices matter. Forecasts of low long-horizon stock returns in the mid-1990s are caused not by earnings or dividends, but by high stock prices. Copyright The American Finance Association 1998.

Suggested Citation

  • Owen Lamont, 1998. "Earnings and Expected Returns," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 53(5), pages 1563-1587, October.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:jfinan:v:53:y:1998:i:5:p:1563-1587
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    JEL classification:

    • G12 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Asset Pricing; Trading Volume; Bond Interest Rates

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