Pseudo Market Timing: Fact or Fiction?
The average firm going public or issuing new equity has underperformed the market in the long run. Endogeneity of the number of new issues has been proposed as a potential explanation of this long-run underperformance. Under pseudo market timing of new issues, ex post measures of average abnormal returns may be negative on average despite zero ex ante abnormal returns. We show that, under reasonable stationarity assumptions on the process generating events, traditional measures of average abnormal returns are consistent, and the pseudo market timing effect is a small sample problem. In simulations of an empirical model we demonstrate that the bias is small even in moderate sample sizes. An abnormal return measure capturing a feasible investment strategy is not biased. We argue that it is unlikely that pseudo market timing is the explanation for the long-run underperformance in equity issuances.
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