Discussion of “Investor recognition and stock returns”

Discussion of “Investor recognition and stock returns” Lehavy and Sloan (2008, Review of Accounting Studies) note that prior studies find that earnings and cash flows explain only a small portion of the cross-sectional variation in stock return. This motivates them to investigate empirically the ability of a behavioral model of capital market equilibrium proposed by Merton (1987, Journal of Finance, 42, 483–510) to explain the remaining variation in stock returns. Their primary findings show that security value is, as predicted, increasing in investor recognition of the security and that investor recognition is incremental to and more important than cash flows in explaining the cross-sectional variation of stock returns. While the research question is intriguing and well motivated, a number of methodological limitations may limit the reliability of the findings/interpretations. In this paper, I first evaluate the motivation and potential contribution of the Lehavy and Sloan (2008) study. I then outline methodological limitations underlying the study and offer ways of overcoming them. In the final section, I state my conclusions. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Review of Accounting Studies Springer Journals

Discussion of “Investor recognition and stock returns”

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Publisher
Springer US
Copyright
Copyright © 2008 by Springer Science+Business Media, LLC
Subject
Business and Management; Accounting/Auditing; Corporate Finance; Public Finance
ISSN
1380-6653
eISSN
1573-7136
D.O.I.
10.1007/s11142-008-9071-6
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Lehavy and Sloan (2008, Review of Accounting Studies) note that prior studies find that earnings and cash flows explain only a small portion of the cross-sectional variation in stock return. This motivates them to investigate empirically the ability of a behavioral model of capital market equilibrium proposed by Merton (1987, Journal of Finance, 42, 483–510) to explain the remaining variation in stock returns. Their primary findings show that security value is, as predicted, increasing in investor recognition of the security and that investor recognition is incremental to and more important than cash flows in explaining the cross-sectional variation of stock returns. While the research question is intriguing and well motivated, a number of methodological limitations may limit the reliability of the findings/interpretations. In this paper, I first evaluate the motivation and potential contribution of the Lehavy and Sloan (2008) study. I then outline methodological limitations underlying the study and offer ways of overcoming them. In the final section, I state my conclusions.

Journal

Review of Accounting StudiesSpringer Journals

Published: Mar 4, 2008

References

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