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Going, Going, Gone? The Apparent Demise of the Accruals Anomaly

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  • Jeremiah Green

    () (The Pennsylvania State University, University Park, Pennsylvania 16802)

  • John R. M. Hand

    () (University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Chapel Hill, North Carolina 27599)

  • Mark T. Soliman

    () (University of Washington, Seattle, Washington 98195)

Abstract

Consistent with public statements made by sophisticated practitioners, we document that the hedge returns to Sloan's (Sloan, R. G. 1996. Do stock prices fully reflect information in accruals and cash flows about future earnings? Accounting Rev. 71(3) 289-315) accruals anomaly appear to have decayed in U.S. stock markets to the point that they are, on average, no longer reliably positive. We explore some potential reasons why this has happened. Our empirical analyses suggest that the anomaly's demise stems in part from an increase in the amount of capital invested by hedge funds into exploiting it, as measured by hedge fund assets under management and trading volume in extreme accrual firms. A decline in the size of the accrual mispricing signal, as measured by the magnitude of extreme decile accruals and the relative persistence of cash flows and accruals, may also play a (weaker) role. This paper was accepted by Stefan Reichelstein, accounting.

Suggested Citation

  • Jeremiah Green & John R. M. Hand & Mark T. Soliman, 2011. "Going, Going, Gone? The Apparent Demise of the Accruals Anomaly," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 57(5), pages 797-816, May.
  • Handle: RePEc:inm:ormnsc:v:57:y:2011:i:5:p:797-816
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    File URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1287/mnsc.1110.1320
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    3. Stefan Nagel, 2013. "Empirical Cross-Sectional Asset Pricing," Annual Review of Financial Economics, Annual Reviews, vol. 5(1), pages 167-199, November.
    4. Kim, Young Jun & Kim, Jung Hoon & Kwon, Sewon & Lee, Su Jeong, 2015. "Percent accruals and the accrual anomaly: Korean evidence," Pacific-Basin Finance Journal, Elsevier, vol. 35(PA), pages 340-366.
    5. Nicole Thorne Jenkins & Michael D. Kimbrough & Juan Wang, 2016. "The extent of informational efficiency in the credit default swap market: evidence from post-earnings announcement returns," Review of Quantitative Finance and Accounting, Springer, vol. 46(4), pages 725-761, May.
    6. Goto, Shingo & Xiao, Gang & Xu, Yan, 2015. "As told by the supplier: Trade credit and the cross section of stock returns," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 60(C), pages 296-309.
    7. Hui, Kai Wai & Nelson, Karen K. & Yeung, P. Eric, 2016. "On the persistence and pricing of industry-wide and firm-specific earnings, cash flows, and accruals," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 61(1), pages 185-202.
    8. Yong-Chul Shin & Kun Yu & Neil Fargher, 2016. "Do investors misprice components of net periodic pension cost?," Accounting and Finance, Accounting and Finance Association of Australia and New Zealand, vol. 56(3), pages 845-878, September.
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    11. Theodosia Konstantinidi & Arthur Kraft & Peter F. Pope, 2016. "Asymmetric Persistence and the Market Pricing of Accruals and Cash Flows," Abacus, Accounting Foundation, University of Sydney, vol. 52(1), pages 140-165, March.
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    13. Jonathan Lewellen & Robert J. Resutek, 2016. "The predictive power of investment and accruals," Review of Accounting Studies, Springer, vol. 21(4), pages 1046-1080, December.
    14. Jacobs, Heiko, 2015. "What explains the dynamics of 100 anomalies?," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 57(C), pages 65-85.
    15. Eli Amir & Itay Kama & Shai Levi, 2015. "Conditional Persistence of Earnings Components and Accounting Anomalies," Journal of Business Finance & Accounting, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 42(7-8), pages 801-825, September.
    16. Panos N. Patatoukas, 2016. "Asymmetrically Timely Loss Recognition and the Accrual Anomaly. Discussion of Konstantinidi et al," Abacus, Accounting Foundation, University of Sydney, vol. 52(1), pages 166-175, March.
    17. Bin Miao & Siew Hong Teoh & Zinan Zhu, 2016. "Limited attention, statement of cash flow disclosure, and the valuation of accruals," Review of Accounting Studies, Springer, vol. 21(2), pages 473-515, June.
    18. Houdou Basse Mama & Rachidi Kotchoni, 2017. "Investor Relations' Quality and Mispricing," EconomiX Working Papers 2017-33, University of Paris Nanterre, EconomiX.
    19. Strydom, Maria & Skully, Michael & Veeraraghavan, Madhu, 2014. "Is the accrual anomaly robust to firm-level analysis?," International Review of Financial Analysis, Elsevier, vol. 34(C), pages 157-165.
    20. Bok Baik & Kyonghee Kim & Richard Morton & Yongoh Roh, 2016. "Analysts’ pre-tax income forecasts and the tax expense anomaly," Review of Accounting Studies, Springer, vol. 21(2), pages 559-595, June.
    21. David R. Gallagher & Peter A. Gardner & Camille H. Schmidt & Terry S. Walter, 2014. "Portfolio Quality and Mutual Fund Performance," International Review of Finance, International Review of Finance Ltd., vol. 14(4), pages 485-521, December.
    22. repec:eee:reveco:v:53:y:2018:i:c:p:168-184 is not listed on IDEAS
    23. Chichernea, Doina C. & Holder, Anthony D. & Petkevich, Alex, 2015. "Does return dispersion explain the accrual and investment anomalies?," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 60(1), pages 133-148.
    24. Chordia, Tarun & Subrahmanyam, Avanidhar & Tong, Qing, 2014. "Have capital market anomalies attenuated in the recent era of high liquidity and trading activity?," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 58(1), pages 41-58.
    25. Simlai, Prodosh E., 2016. "Time-varying risk, mispricing attributes, and the accrual premium," International Review of Financial Analysis, Elsevier, vol. 48(C), pages 150-161.

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