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Fifty-Fifty. Stock Recommendations and Stock Prices. Effects and Benefits of Investment Advice in the Business Media


  • Thomas Schuster

    (Leipzig University)


The business media play an active role in influencing stock prices. Statistically significant excess returns at the time of the publication of stock recommendations have been documented many times. Frequently these abnormal gains begin to accumulate long before the publication date. In most cases they reach their highs on the day the recommendations are disseminated to the public. With few exceptions a price reversal sets in shortly thereafter: Excess returns in recommended stocks are at least partially given up. Many stocks now enter a period of underperformance, earning significant negative returns. The return reversions indicate that such stock price reactions are due to price pressure from "naive" investors hoping to profit from the experts. However, most media lack any real information that is not yet reflected in stock prices. In short: There is no evidence that stock recommendations published in the media offer any systematic opportunity to outperform the market. The evidence leads to the opposite conclusion: That investors who follow such advice will lose in the long run.

Suggested Citation

  • Thomas Schuster, 2003. "Fifty-Fifty. Stock Recommendations and Stock Prices. Effects and Benefits of Investment Advice in the Business Media," Finance 0303002, EconWPA.
  • Handle: RePEc:wpa:wuwpfi:0303002
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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Beltz, Jess & Jennings, Robert, 1997. ""Wall street week with Louis Rukheyser" recommendations:Trading activity and performance," Review of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 6(1), pages 15-27.
    2. Stephen J. Brown & William N. Goetzmann & Alok Kumar, 1998. "The Dow Theory: William Peter Hamilton's Track Record Reconsidered," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 53(4), pages 1311-1333, August.
    3. Werner Antweiler & Murray Z. Frank, 2004. "Is All That Talk Just Noise? The Information Content of Internet Stock Message Boards," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 59(3), pages 1259-1294, June.
    4. Albert, Robert Jr. & Smaby, Timothy R., 1996. "Market response to analyst recommendations in the "dartboard" column: the information and price-pressure effects," Review of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 5(1), pages 59-74.
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    More about this item


    stock recommendations; financial media; stock prices; market efficiency;

    JEL classification:

    • G12 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Asset Pricing; Trading Volume; Bond Interest Rates
    • G14 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Information and Market Efficiency; Event Studies; Insider Trading
    • G19 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Other
    • M41 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting; Personnel Economics - - Accounting - - - Accounting

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