Washington meets Wall Street: A closer examination of the presidential cycle puzzle
We show that average excess returns during the last two years of the presidential cycle are significantly higher than during the first two years: 9.8 percent over the period 1948 2008. This pattern in returns cannot be explained by business-cycle variables capturing time-varying risk premia, differences in risk levels, or by consumer and investor sentiment. In this paper, we formally test the presidential election cycle (PEC) hypothesis as the alternative explanation found in the literature for explaining the presidential cycle anomaly. PEC states that incumbent parties and presidents have an incentive to manipulate the economy (via budget expansions and taxes) to remain in power. We formulate eight empirically testable propositions relating to the fiscal, monetary, tax, unexpected inflation and political implications of the PEC hypothesis. We do not find statistically significant evidence confirming the PEC hypothesis as a plausible explanation for the presidential cycle effect. The existence of the presidential cycle effect in U.S. financial markets thus remains a puzzle that cannot be easily explained by politicians employing their economic influence to remain in power.
|Date of creation:||2010|
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: House of Finance, Grüneburgplatz 1, HPF H5, D-60323 Frankfurt am Main|
Phone: +49 (0)69 798-30050
Fax: +49 (0)69 798-30077
Web page: http://www.ifk-cfs.de/
More information through EDIRC
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Alesina, Alberto & Sachs, Jeffrey, 1988.
"Political Parties and the Business Cycle in the United States, 1948-1984,"
Journal of Money, Credit and Banking,
Blackwell Publishing, vol. 20(1), pages 63-82, February.
- Alberto Alesina & Jeffrey Sachs, 1986. "Political Parties and the Business Cycle in the United States, 1948-1984," NBER Working Papers 1940, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Wong, Wing-Keung & McAleer, Michael, 2009. "Mapping the Presidential Election Cycle in US stock markets," Mathematics and Computers in Simulation (MATCOM), Elsevier, vol. 79(11), pages 3267-3277.
- Sachs, Jeffrey & Alesina, Alberto, 1988. "Political Parties and the Business Cycle in the United States, 1948-1984," Scholarly Articles 4553026, Harvard University Department of Economics.
- Campbell, John Y, 1991. "A Variance Decomposition for Stock Returns," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 101(405), pages 157-179, March.
- John Y. Campbell, 1990. "A Variance Decomposition for Stock Returns," NBER Working Papers 3246, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Campbell, John, 1991. "A Variance Decomposition for Stock Returns," Scholarly Articles 3207695, Harvard University Department of Economics.
- Malcolm Baker & Jeffrey Wurgler, 2006. "Investor Sentiment and the Cross-Section of Stock Returns," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 61(4), pages 1645-1680, 08.
- Malcolm Baker & Jeffrey Wurgler, 2004. "Investor Sentiment and the Cross-Section of Stock Returns," NBER Working Papers 10449, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- MacRae, C Duncan, 1977. "A Political Model of the Business Cycle," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 85(2), pages 239-263, April.
- Booth, James R. & Booth, Lena Chua, 2003. "Is presidential cycle in security returns merely a reflection of business conditions?," Review of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 12(2), pages 131-159.
- Stephen R Foerster & John J Schmitz, 1997. "The Transmission of U.S. Election Cycles to International Stock Returns," Journal of International Business Studies, Palgrave Macmillan;Academy of International Business, vol. 28(1), pages 1-27, March.
- Burton Abrams & Plamen Iossifov, 2006. "Does the Fed Contribute to a Political Business Cycle?," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 129(3), pages 249-262, December.
- Fama, Eugene F. & Schwert, G. William, 1977. "Asset returns and inflation," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 5(2), pages 115-146, November.
- French, Kenneth R. & Schwert, G. William & Stambaugh, Robert F., 1987. "Expected stock returns and volatility," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 19(1), pages 3-29, September.
- Gartner, Manfred & Wellershoff, Klaus W., 1995. "Is there an election cycle in American stock returns?," International Review of Economics & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 4(4), pages 387-410.
- Merton, Robert C, 1974. "On the Pricing of Corporate Debt: The Risk Structure of Interest Rates," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 29(2), pages 449-470, May.
- Merton, Robert C., 1973. "On the pricing of corporate debt: the risk structure of interest rates," Working papers 684-73., Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Sloan School of Management.
- Pedro Santa-Clara & Rossen Valkanov, 2003. "The Presidential Puzzle: Political Cycles and the Stock Market," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 58(5), pages 1841-1872, October.
- Chen, Nai-Fu & Roll, Richard & Ross, Stephen A, 1986. "Economic Forces and the Stock Market," The Journal of Business, University of Chicago Press, vol. 59(3), pages 383-403, July.
- Rogoff, Kenneth, 1990. "Equilibrium Political Budget Cycles," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 80(1), pages 21-36, March.
- Kenneth Rogoff, 1987. "Equilibrium Political Budget Cycles," NBER Working Papers 2428, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Hodrick, Robert J, 1992. "Dividend Yields and Expected Stock Returns: Alternative Procedures for Inference and Measurement," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 5(3), pages 357-386.
- Tom Doan, "undated". "OLSHODRICK: RATS procedure to compute Hodrick standard errors," Statistical Software Components RTS00147, Boston College Department of Economics.
- Fama, Eugene F. & French, Kenneth R., 1989. "Business conditions and expected returns on stocks and bonds," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 25(1), pages 23-49, November.
- Fama, Eugene F, 1990. " Stock Returns, Expected Returns, and Real Activity," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 45(4), pages 1089-1108, September.
- Newey, Whitney & West, Kenneth, 2014. "A simple, positive semi-definite, heteroscedasticity and autocorrelation consistent covariance matrix," Applied Econometrics, Publishing House "SINERGIA PRESS", vol. 33(1), pages 125-132.
- Newey, Whitney K & West, Kenneth D, 1987. "A Simple, Positive Semi-definite, Heteroskedasticity and Autocorrelation Consistent Covariance Matrix," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 55(3), pages 703-708, May.
- Whitney K. Newey & Kenneth D. West, 1986. "A Simple, Positive Semi-Definite, Heteroskedasticity and AutocorrelationConsistent Covariance Matrix," NBER Technical Working Papers 0055, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Chappell, Henry W, Jr & Keech, William R, 1986. "Party Differences in Macroeconomic Policies and Outcomes," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 76(2), pages 71-74, May.
- Fair, Ray C, 1982. "The Effect of Economic Events on Votes for President: 1980 Results," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 64(2), pages 322-325, May.
- Hibbs, Douglas A, Jr, 1986. "Political Parties and Macroeconomic Policies and Outcomes in the United States," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 76(2), pages 66-70, May.
- William D. Nordhaus, 1975. "The Political Business Cycle," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 42(2), pages 169-190.
- Sean D. Campbell & Canlin Li, 2004. "Alternative estimates of the presidential premium," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 2004-69, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
- Pierre Collin-Dufresne, 2001. "The Determinants of Credit Spread Changes," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 56(6), pages 2177-2207, December.
- Michael Lemmon & Evgenia Portniaguina, 2006. "Consumer Confidence and Asset Prices: Some Empirical Evidence," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 19(4), pages 1499-1529. Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:zbw:cfswop:201006. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (ZBW - German National Library of Economics)
If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.
If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.
If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.
Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.