PurposePrevious research has found that industry concentration and firm efficiency affect stock returns. However, it is not clear if concentration is a byproduct of efficiency and hence its effect on stock returns is driven by efficiency. This paper aims to examine the relationships between industry concentration, firm efficiency and average stock returns. Mainly, it aims to answer if the effects of industry concentration and firm efficiency on stock returns are independent and significant.Design/methodology/approachThe stochastic frontier approach is used to estimate firm efficiency. The Herfindahl index is used to measure industry concentration. Regression and vector autoregressive analyses are performed to examine cross-sectional and lagged relationships between concentration, efficiency, profitability and stock returns. The characteristics-based benchmark approach is also used to investigate performance of test portfolios.FindingsIndustry concentration and firm efficiency have independent and significant effects on average stock returns through profit margins and market shares, which are related to firms’ profitability. Industry concentration has a greater positive impact on market shares than on profit margins, whereas firm efficiency has a greater positive impact on profit margins than on market shares. In sum, highly efficient firms in highly concentrated markets have lower distress risks and hence provide lower average stock returns.Originality/valueThe paper shows the linkages between industry concentration, firm efficiency, profitability and stock returns that have not been documented together in prior studies. Businesses can better understand the impact of concentration and efficiency on market shares and profit margins. Researchers may consider incorporating concentration and efficiency, both of which are meaningful microeconomic variables, into an asset pricing model. Investors can enhance their returns by having a zero-cost portfolio with long and short positions in stocks of firms with different levels of concentration and efficiency.
Studies in Economics and Finance – Emerald Publishing
Published: May 30, 2019
It’s your single place to instantly
discover and read the research
that matters to you.
Enjoy affordable access to
over 18 million articles from more than
15,000 peer-reviewed journals.
All for just $49/month
Query the DeepDyve database, plus search all of PubMed and Google Scholar seamlessly
Save any article or search result from DeepDyve, PubMed, and Google Scholar... all in one place.
Get unlimited, online access to over 18 million full-text articles from more than 15,000 scientific journals.
Read from thousands of the leading scholarly journals from SpringerNature, Wiley-Blackwell, Oxford University Press and more.
All the latest content is available, no embargo periods.
“Hi guys, I cannot tell you how much I love this resource. Incredible. I really believe you've hit the nail on the head with this site in regards to solving the research-purchase issue.”Daniel C.
“Whoa! It’s like Spotify but for academic articles.”@Phil_Robichaud
“I must say, @deepdyve is a fabulous solution to the independent researcher's problem of #access to #information.”@deepthiw
“My last article couldn't be possible without the platform @deepdyve that makes journal papers cheaper.”@JoseServera