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Lunacy in the Stock Market—What is the Evidence?


  • Anthony Herbst



Popular culture and folklore have long recognized the influence of the lunar cycle on plant, animal, and human behavior. Many of the effects have been validated in the physical and biological sciences. However, until recently such effects have been largely, if not completely ignored in the academic literature of financial economics. This study aims to contribute to answering whether there is, as some claim, a lunar influence on stock prices or volatility. The findings of this work support the Efficient Markets Hypothesis—no consistent, predictable lunar influence is found on either daily returns or daily price volatility in the Dow Jones Industrial Average, for either new or full moons. Some effects are found, but not consistent or predictable with lunar and calendar information alone. Copyright Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2007

Suggested Citation

  • Anthony Herbst, 2007. "Lunacy in the Stock Market—What is the Evidence?," Journal of Bioeconomics, Springer, vol. 9(1), pages 1-18, April.
  • Handle: RePEc:kap:jbioec:v:9:y:2007:i:1:p:1-18
    DOI: 10.1007/s10818-007-9016-3

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Benoit Mandelbrot, 2015. "The Variation of Certain Speculative Prices," World Scientific Book Chapters,in: THE WORLD SCIENTIFIC HANDBOOK OF FUTURES MARKETS, chapter 3, pages 39-78 World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd..
    2. Garman, Mark B & Klass, Michael J, 1980. "On the Estimation of Security Price Volatilities from Historical Data," The Journal of Business, University of Chicago Press, vol. 53(1), pages 67-78, January.
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    Cited by:

    1. Rayenda Khresna Brahmana & Chee-Wooi Hooy & Zamri Ahmad, 2014. "Moon Phase as the Cause of Monday Irrationality: Case of Asean Day of the Week Anomaly," The International Journal of Economic Behavior - IJEB, Faculty of Business and Administration, University of Bucharest, vol. 4(1), pages 51-65.
    2. repec:but:manage:v:4:y:2014:i:1:p:51-65 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. Reschenhofer, Erhard & Lingler, Michaela, 2013. "Detecting synchronous cycles in financial time series of unequal length," Journal of Empirical Finance, Elsevier, vol. 24(C), pages 1-9.

    More about this item


    lunar cycles; moon phases; stock market; volatility; E44; G12; G14;

    JEL classification:

    • E44 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Money and Interest Rates - - - Financial Markets and the Macroeconomy
    • 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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