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The Effect of Preceding Sequences on Stock Returns

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  • Andrey Kudryavtsev

Abstract

This study explores the effect of the gambler's fallacy on stock returns. I hypothesize that if during a number of consecutive trading days, a stock's return is positive (negative), then due to the gambler's fallacy, at least some of the investors may believe that the stock's price "has" to subsequently fall (rise), and thus, to increase their willingness to sell (buy) the stock, resulting in negative (positive) abnormal market-adjusted stock returns. Employing a large sample of daily stock price data, I was able to document that following relatively long sequences of positive (negative) stock returns, abnormal stock returns are on average significantly negative (positive), indicating the existence of the price pressure towards the return sign reversal. Moreover, the magnitude of the effect is stronger for longer return sequences. The effect is found to be more pronounced for smaller and more volatile stocks, and is robust to other relevant company - and stock-specific factors.

Suggested Citation

  • Andrey Kudryavtsev, 2017. "The Effect of Preceding Sequences on Stock Returns," European Financial and Accounting Journal, University of Economics, Prague, vol. 2017(4), pages 83-96.
  • Handle: RePEc:prg:jnlefa:v:2017:y:2017:i:4:id:202:p:83-96
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Rachel Croson & James Sundali, 2005. "The Gambler’s Fallacy and the Hot Hand: Empirical Data from Casinos," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 30(3), pages 195-209, May.
    2. Charles T. Clotfelter & Philip J. Cook, 1993. "Notes: The "Gambler's Fallacy" in Lottery Play," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 39(12), pages 1521-1525, December.
    3. Andrey Kudryavtsev & Gil Cohen & Shlomit Hon-Snir, 2013. "“Rational” or “Intuitive”: Are Behavioral Biases Correlated Across Stock Market Investors?," Contemporary Economics, University of Economics and Human Sciences in Warsaw., vol. 7(2), June.
    4. William N. Goetzmann & Alok Kumar, 2008. "Equity Portfolio Diversification," Review of Finance, European Finance Association, vol. 12(3), pages 433-463.
    5. Terrell, Dek, 1994. "A Test of the Gambler's Fallacy: Evidence from Pari-mutuel Games," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 8(3), pages 309-317, May.
    6. James Sundali & Rachel Croson, 2006. "Biases in casino betting: The hot hand and the gambler's fallacy," Judgment and Decision Making, Society for Judgment and Decision Making, vol. 1, pages 1-12, July.
    7. Terrell, Dek & Farmer, Amy, 1996. "Optimal Betting and Efficiency in Parimutuel Betting Markets with Information Costs," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 106(437), pages 846-868, July.
    8. Terrell, Dek, 1998. "Biases in Assessments of Probabilities: New Evidence from Greyhound Races," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 17(2), pages 151-166, November.
    9. Zielonka, Piotr, 2004. "Technical analysis as the representation of typical cognitive biases," International Review of Financial Analysis, Elsevier, vol. 13(2), pages 217-225.
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Abnormal Stock Returns; Gambler's Fallacy; Investment Decisions; Price Reversals; Stock Return Sequences;

    JEL classification:

    • G11 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Portfolio Choice; Investment Decisions
    • G12 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Asset Pricing; Trading Volume; Bond Interest Rates
    • G19 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Other

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