Value relevance and the dot-com bubble of the 1990s
During the dot-com bubble of the 1990s, equity market valuation was a popular topic for investors, financial analysts and academics. Some questioned whether traditional accounting and financial information had lost its value relevance, as stocks traded at multiples of earnings well in excess of historic levels, leading Alan Greenspan to caution against “irrational exuberance.” This study examines the relation between market valuation and traditional accounting/financial information before, during and after the bubble. We confirm previous research that documents a decline in the relation between market value and traditional accounting information leading up to the bubble period. However, we also document that after the collapse of the bubble in 2000 this trend reverses. We also examine two related metrics that may provide a rational explanation for this phenomenon, including the quality of earnings, and the aggressiveness of financial analysts’ forecasts, finding some support that earnings quality may contribute to the changes in value relevance, but not the aggressiveness of analyst forecasts.
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