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An empirical analysis of changes in credit rating properties: Timeliness, accuracy and volatility

  • Cheng, Mei
  • Neamtiu, Monica
Registered author(s):

    In recent years, credit rating agencies have faced increased regulatory pressure and investor criticism for their ratings' lack of timeliness. This study investigates whether and how rating agencies respond to such pressure and criticism. We find that the rating agencies not only improve rating timeliness, but also increase rating accuracy and reduce rating volatility. Our findings support the criticism that, in the past, rating agencies did not avail themselves of the best rating methodologies/efforts possible. When their market power is threatened by the possibility of increased regulatory intervention and/or reputation concerns, rating agencies respond by improving their credit analysis.

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    File URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/B6V87-4V0TCYC-1/2/d2a2735dcdab14d751cedbffb695fd2a
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    Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Journal of Accounting and Economics.

    Volume (Year): 47 (2009)
    Issue (Month): 1-2 (March)
    Pages: 108-130

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    Handle: RePEc:eee:jaecon:v:47:y:2009:i:1-2:p:108-130
    Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/jae

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    1. Edward I. Altman, 1968. "Financial Ratios, Discriminant Analysis And The Prediction Of Corporate Bankruptcy," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 23(4), pages 589-609, 09.
    2. Kaplan, Robert S & Urwitz, Gabriel, 1979. "Statistical Models of Bond Ratings: A Methodological Inquiry," The Journal of Business, University of Chicago Press, vol. 52(2), pages 231-61, April.
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    5. Altman, Edward I. & Rijken, Herbert A., 2004. "How rating agencies achieve rating stability," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 28(11), pages 2679-2714, November.
    6. Loffler, Gunter, 2004. "An anatomy of rating through the cycle," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 28(3), pages 695-720, March.
    7. Hand, John R M & Holthausen, Robert W & Leftwich, Richard W, 1992. " The Effect of Bond Rating Agency Announcements on Bond and Stock Prices," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 47(2), pages 733-52, June.
    8. Holthausen, Robert W. & Leftwich, Richard W., 1986. "The effect of bond rating changes on common stock prices," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 17(1), pages 57-89, September.
    9. Jorion, Philippe & Liu, Zhu & Shi, Charles, 2005. "Informational effects of regulation FD: evidence from rating agencies," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 76(2), pages 309-330, May.
    10. Beaver, William H. & Shakespeare, Catherine & Soliman, Mark T., 2006. "Differential properties in the ratings of certified versus non-certified bond-rating agencies," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 42(3), pages 303-334, December.
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