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Keynesian Beauty Contest, Accounting Disclosure, and Market Efficiency

  • PINGYANG GAO

ABSTRACT This paper examines the market efficiency consequences of accounting disclosure in the context of stock markets as a Keynesian beauty contest, an influential metaphor originally proposed by Keynes [1936] and recently formalized by Allen, Morris, and Shin [2006]. In such markets, public information plays an additional commonality role, biasing stock prices away from the consensus fundamental value toward public information. Despite this bias, I demonstrate that provisions of public information always drive stock prices closer to the fundamental value. Hence, as a main source of public information, accounting disclosure enhances market efficiency, and transparency should not be compromised on grounds of the Keynesian-beauty-contest effect. Copyright (c), University of Chicago on behalf of the Institute of Professional Accounting, 2008.

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Article provided by Wiley Blackwell in its journal Journal of Accounting Research.

Volume (Year): 46 (2008)
Issue (Month): 4 (09)
Pages: 785-807

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Handle: RePEc:bla:joares:v:46:y:2008:i:4:p:785-807
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  1. Grossman, Sanford J, 1976. "On the Efficiency of Competitive Stock Markets Where Trades Have Diverse Information," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 31(2), pages 573-85, May.
  2. Guillaume Plantin & Haresh Sapra & Hyun Song Shin, 2008. "Marking-to-Market: Panacea or Pandora's Box?," Journal of Accounting Research, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 46(2), pages 435-460, 05.
  3. Regina M. Anctil & John Dickhaut & Chandra Kanodia & Brian Shapiro, 2004. "Information Transparency and Coordination Failure: Theory and Experiment," Journal of Accounting Research, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 42(2), pages 159-195, 05.
  4. Hirshleifer, Jack, 1971. "The Private and Social Value of Information and the Reward to Inventive Activity," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 61(4), pages 561-74, September.
  5. Brunnermeier, Markus K., 2001. "Asset Pricing under Asymmetric Information: Bubbles, Crashes, Technical Analysis, and Herding," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780198296980.
  6. Stephen Morris & Hyun Song Shin, 2002. "Social Value of Public Information," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 92(5), pages 1521-1534, December.
  7. Diamond, Douglas W. & Verrecchia, Robert E., 1981. "Information aggregation in a noisy rational expectations economy," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 9(3), pages 221-235, September.
  8. Grossman, Sanford J, 1995. " Dynamic Asset Allocation and the Informational Efficiency of Markets," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 50(3), pages 773-87, July.
  9. Sushil Bikhchandani & David Hirshleifer & Ivo Welch, 1998. "Learning from the Behavior of Others: Conformity, Fads, and Informational Cascades," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 12(3), pages 151-170, Summer.
  10. Beverly R. Walther, 2004. "Discussion of Information Transparency and Coordination Failure: Theory and Experiment," Journal of Accounting Research, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 42(2), pages 197-205, 05.
  11. Franklin Allen & Stephen Morris & Hyun Song Shin, 2006. "Beauty Contests and Iterated Expectations in Asset Markets," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 19(3), pages 719-752.
  12. Grossman, Sanford J & Stiglitz, Joseph E, 1980. "On the Impossibility of Informationally Efficient Markets," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 70(3), pages 393-408, June.
  13. David Easley & Maureen O'hara, 2004. "Information and the Cost of Capital," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 59(4), pages 1553-1583, 08.
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