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Moody’s credit ratings and the stock market performance of Portuguese rated firms

  • Pacheco, Luís

Never has the issue of sovereign credit ratings attracted such an interest by policy and opinion makers, bankers and journalists, or even the public opinion, as witnessed in the last couple of years. In spite of being accused of contributing to the instability of financial markets, credit rating agencies have undoubtedly a role in financial markets, affecting its performance and guiding investor’s decisions. This paper analyzes the impact of the announcement of changes in Moody’s ratings over the performance of a set of rated firms quoted in the Portuguese stock market. Following an event study methodology, we collect ratings and outlook announcements by that major credit agency over the period 2006-2011. We find a significant response of share prices to changes in ratings, with that response anticipating the announcement. We think that could be explained by previous sovereign rating changes or to the contagion effects of a bearish market. When analyzing the period after January 2010, we observe a stronger reaction to announcements, which is understandable given the greater influence and market sensitivity to rating agencies.

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Paper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 36551.

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Date of creation: Dec 2011
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Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:36551
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  1. Reinhart, Carmen, 2002. "Sovereign Credit Ratings Before and After Financial Crises," MPRA Paper 7410, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  2. Bertrand Candelon & Amadou N. R. Sy & Rabah Arezki, 2011. "Sovereign Rating News and Financial Markets Spillovers; Evidence From the European Debt Crisis," IMF Working Papers 11/68, International Monetary Fund.
  3. Afonso, António & Furceri, Davide & Gomes, Pedro, 2012. "Sovereign credit ratings and financial markets linkages: Application to European data," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 31(3), pages 606-638.
  4. Brooks, Robert & Faff, Robert W. & Hillier, David & Hillier, Joseph, 2004. "The national market impact of sovereign rating changes," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 28(1), pages 233-250, January.
  5. Reisen, Helmut & von Maltzan, Julia, 1999. "Boom and Bust and Sovereign Ratings," International Finance, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 2(2), pages 273-93, July.
  6. Brown, Stephen J. & Warner, Jerold B., 1980. "Measuring security price performance," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 8(3), pages 205-258, September.
  7. Lawrence J. White, 2010. "Markets: The Credit Rating Agencies," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 24(2), pages 211-26, Spring.
  8. Gande, Amar & Parsley, David C., 2005. "News spillovers in the sovereign debt market," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 75(3), pages 691-734, March.
  9. Joo, Sang Lyong & Pruitt, Stephen W., 2006. "Corporate bond ratings changes and economic instability: Evidence from the Korean financial crisis," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 90(1), pages 12-20, January.
  10. Mora, Nada, 2006. "Sovereign credit ratings: Guilty beyond reasonable doubt?," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 30(7), pages 2041-2062, July.
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