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How are shorts informed?

Author

Listed:
  • Engelberg, Joseph E.
  • Reed, Adam V.
  • Ringgenberg, Matthew C.

Abstract

We find that a substantial portion of short sellers' trading advantage comes from their ability to analyze publicly available information. Using a database of short sales combined with a database of news releases, we show that the well-documented negative relation between short sales and future returns is twice as large on news days and four times as large on days with negative news. Further, we find that the most informed short sales are not from market makers but rather from clients, and we find only weak evidence that short sellers anticipate news events. Overall, the evidence suggests that public news provides valuable trading opportunities for short sellers who are skilled information processors.

Suggested Citation

  • Engelberg, Joseph E. & Reed, Adam V. & Ringgenberg, Matthew C., 2012. "How are shorts informed?," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 105(2), pages 260-278.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:jfinec:v:105:y:2012:i:2:p:260-278
    DOI: 10.1016/j.jfineco.2012.03.001
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Asymmetric information; Manipulation; News media; Short sales;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • G12 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Asset Pricing; Trading Volume; Bond Interest Rates
    • G14 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Information and Market Efficiency; Event Studies; Insider Trading

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