This study analyzes seasonal patterns in tax-exempt and taxable money market mutual fund yields. We document a significant increase in tax-exempt and taxable yields during the last three weeks of December, followed by a significant decrease in yields during the first three weeks of January. The yield changes are associated with a corresponding outflow of fund assets at the end of the year and inflow of assets in the beginning of the year. We also find that tax-exempt yields change systematically around the 15th of April, June and September, which are key individual income tax dates. These results are consistent with liquidity effects associated with year-end wages, dividends, and bonus payments and tax-effects. We also find that institution window dressing contributes to the year-end movements in taxable and tax-exempt fund yields. One implication is that municipalities planning to issue short-term notes and investors in these funds can time their actions to take advantage of these systematic yield changes.
Review of Quantitative Finance and Accounting – Springer Journals
Published: Oct 8, 2004
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