Media Bias in Financial Newspapers: Evidence from Early 20th Century France
The financial market was very developed in France in the years before World War I and subsequently many newspapers provided information to investors. Yet, contemporaries blamed the inaccuracy and biases of the financial press. This study implements a quantitative test to assess this judgment. The results show that although the firms’ media coverage were impacted by the fact that firms paid to appear in newspapers, the performance of the firms selected by the media was pretty good. A better explanation of the bias is then that newspapers choose firms according to their editorial policy and that they were able to make firms paid for that.
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