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Regulating Insider Trading when Investment Matters

  • Medrano, Luis Angel
  • Vives, Xavier

We analyse the effects of insider trading on real investment and welfare, and the consequences of different regulatory policies: a disclose-or-abstain rule, ‘fair’ disclosure, laissez-faire and forbidding insider trades based on ‘precise’ information. We perform the analysis in a model in which all traders are rational expected-utility maximizers and aware of their position in the market. We compare the equilibrium with insider trading with the equilibrium in the same market without insider trading in two scenarios: costly and costless information acquisition. We find that with costly information acquisition an abstain-or-disclose rule tends to be optimal while with free information acquisition laissez-faire is better. This suggests enforcing an abstain-or-disclose rule with a high standard of proof for inside information. This rule of thumb advocates a laissez policy both for selective disclosure and in high-tech industries. Our approach uncovers the pitfalls of welfare analysis in the noise trader model.

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Paper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 3292.

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Date of creation: Apr 2002
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:3292
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  1. Sarkar Asani, 1994. "On the Equivalence of Noise Trader and Hedger Models in Market Microstructure," Journal of Financial Intermediation, Elsevier, vol. 3(2), pages 204-212, March.
  2. Demange Gabrielle & Laroque Guy, 1995. "Private Information and the Design of Securities," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 65(1), pages 233-257, February.
  3. Bernhardt, Dan & Hollifield, Burton & Hughson, Eric, 1995. "Investment and Insider Trading," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 8(2), pages 501-43.
  4. Leland, Hayne E, 1992. "Insider Trading: Should It Be Prohibited?," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 100(4), pages 859-87, August.
  5. repec:oup:restud:v:56:y:1989:i:3:p:317-55 is not listed on IDEAS
  6. Jean-Pierre Danthine & Serge Moresi, 1990. "Volatility, Information and Noise Trading," CEPR Financial Markets Paper 0010, European Science Foundation Network in Financial Markets, c/o C.E.P.R, 77 Bastwick Street, London EC1V 3PZ..
  7. Bhattacharya, U. & Spiegel, M., 1989. "Insiders, Outsiders And Market Breakdowns," Papers fb-_89-20, Columbia - Graduate School of Business.
  8. Khanna, Naveen & Slezak, Steve L & Bradley, Michael, 1994. "Insider Trading, Outside Search, and Resource Allocation: Why Firms and Society May Disagree on Insider Trading Restrictions," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 7(3), pages 575-608.
  9. Ausubel, Lawrence M, 1990. "Insider Trading in a Rational Expectations Economy," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 80(5), pages 1022-41, December.
  10. Bray, Margaret, 1985. "Rational Expectations, Information and Asset Markets: An Introduction," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 37(2), pages 161-95, June.
  11. Bernhardt, Dan & Hughson, Eric, 1993. "Intraday Trade in Dealership Markets," Working Papers 852, California Institute of Technology, Division of the Humanities and Social Sciences.
  12. repec:oup:restud:v:63:y:1996:i:2:p:287-300 is not listed on IDEAS
  13. Yosha Oved, 1995. "Information Disclosure Costs and the Choice of Financing Source," Journal of Financial Intermediation, Elsevier, vol. 4(1), pages 3-20, January.
  14. Diamond, Douglas W. & Verrecchia, Robert E., 1981. "Information aggregation in a noisy rational expectations economy," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 9(3), pages 221-235, September.
  15. Demsetz, Harold, 1986. "Corporate Control, Insider Trading, and Rates of Return," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 76(2), pages 313-16, May.
  16. Holmstrom, Bengt & Tirole, Jean, 1993. "Market Liquidity and Performance Monitoring," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 101(4), pages 678-709, August.
  17. Diamond, Douglas W & Dybvig, Philip H, 1983. "Bank Runs, Deposit Insurance, and Liquidity," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 91(3), pages 401-19, June.
  18. Damodaran, Aswath & Liu, Crocker H, 1993. "Insider Trading as a Signal of Private Information," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 6(1), pages 79-119.
  19. repec:oup:qjecon:v:104:y:1989:i:4:p:823-45 is not listed on IDEAS
  20. Utpal Bhattacharya & Hazem Daouk, 2002. "The World Price of Insider Trading," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 57(1), pages 75-108, 02.
  21. Repullo, R., 1994. "Some Remarks on Leland's Model of Insider Trading," Papers 9425, Centro de Estudios Monetarios Y Financieros-.
  22. Spiegel, Matthew & Subrahmanyam, Avanidhar, 1992. "Informed Speculation and Hedging in a Noncompetitive Securities Market," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 5(2), pages 307-29.
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