Browsing by Organization "Swedish School of Economics and Business Administration, Department of Finance and Statistics, Finance"

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  • Salami, Adewale (Hanken School of Economics, 2009)
  • Nandelstadh von, Alexander (Swedish School of Economics and Business Administration, 2002)
    This study contributes to the neglect effect literature by looking at the relative trading volume in terms of value. The results for the Swedish market show a significant positive relationship between the accuracy of estimation and the relative trading volume. Market capitalisation and analyst coverage have in prior studies been used as proxies for neglect. These measures however, do not take into account the effort analysts put in when estimating corporate pre-tax profits. I also find evidence that the industry of the firm influence the accuracy of estimation. In addition, supporting earlier findings, loss making firms are associated with larger forecasting errors. Further, I find that the average forecast error increased in the year 2000 – in Sweden.
  • Kulp-Tåg, Sofie (Svenska handelshögskolan, 2007)
    This paper examines how volatility in financial markets can preferable be modeled. The examination investigates how good the models for the volatility, both linear and nonlinear, are in absorbing skewness and kurtosis. The examination is done on the Nordic stock markets, including Finland, Sweden, Norway and Denmark. Different linear and nonlinear models are applied, and the results indicates that a linear model can almost always be used for modeling the series under investigation, even though nonlinear models performs slightly better in some cases. These results indicate that the markets under study are exposed to asymmetric patterns only to a certain degree. Negative shocks generally have a more prominent effect on the markets, but these effects are not really strong. However, in terms of absorbing skewness and kurtosis, nonlinear models outperform linear ones.
  • Kulp-Tåg, Sofie (Svenska handelshögskolan, 2007)
    This paper uses the Value-at-Risk approach to define the risk in both long and short trading positions. The investigation is done on some major market indices(Japanese, UK, German and US). The performance of models that takes into account skewness and fat-tails are compared to symmetric models in relation to both the specific model for estimating the variance, and the distribution of the variance estimate used as input in the VaR estimation. The results indicate that more flexible models not necessarily perform better in predicting the VaR forecast; the reason for this is most probably the complexity of these models. A general result is that different methods for estimating the variance are needed for different confidence levels of the VaR, and for the different indices. Also, different models are to be used for the left respectively the right tail of the distribution.
  • Ben Sita, Bernard (Svenska handelshögskolan, 2002)
    This paper investigates the persistent pattern in the Helsinki Exchanges. The persistent pattern is analyzed using a time and a price approach. It is hypothesized that arrival times are related to movements in prices. Thus, the arrival times are defined as durations and formulated as an Autoregressive Conditional Duration (ACD) model as in Engle and Russell (1998). The prices are defined as price changes and formulated as a GARCH process including duration measures. The research question follows from market microstructure predictions about price intensities defined as time between price changes. The microstructure theory states that long transaction durations might be associated with both no news and bad news. Accordingly, short durations would be related to high volatility and long durations to low volatility. As a result, the spread will tend to be larger under intensive moments. The main findings of this study are 1) arrival times are positively autocorrelated and 2) long durations are associated with low volatility in the market.
  • Ahlgren, Niklas; Antell, Jan (Svenska handelshögskolan, 2008)
    Financial crises have shown that dramatic movements in one financial market can have a powerful impact on other markets. The paper proposes to use cobreaking to model comovements between financial markets during crises and to test for conta-gion. It finds evidence of cobreaking between stock returns in developed markets. Finding cobreaking has implications for the diversification of international investments. For emerging mar-ket stock returns the evidence of cobreaking is mainly due to the non-financial event of the 9/11 terrorist attacks in 2001. Fi-nancial crises originating in one emerging market do not spread to other markets, i.e., no contagion.
  • Rokkanen, Nikolas (Svenska handelshögskolan, 2008)
    The integrated European debt capital market has undoubtedly broadened the possibilities for companies to access funding from the public and challenged investors to cope with an ever increasing complexity of its market participants. Well into the Euro-era, it is clear that the unified market has created potential for all involved parties, where investment opportunities are able to meet a supply of funds from a broad geographical area now summoned under a single currency. Europe’s traditionally heavy dependency on bank lending as a source of debt capital has thus been easing as corporate residents are able to tap into a deep and liquid capital market to satisfy their funding needs. As national barriers eroded with the inauguration of the Euro and interest rates for the EMU-members converged towards over-all lower yields, a new source of debt capital emerged to the vast majority of corporate residents under the new currency and gave an alternative to the traditionally more maturity-restricted bank debt. With increased sophistication came also an improved knowledge and understanding of the market and its participants. Further, investors became more willing to bear credit risk, which opened the market for firms of ever lower creditworthiness. In the process, the market as a whole saw a change in the profile of issuers, as non-financial firms increasingly sought their funding directly from the bond market. This thesis consists of three separate empirical studies on how corporates fund themselves on the European debt capital markets. The analysis focuses on a firm’s access to and behaviour on the capital market, subsequent the decision to raise capital through the issuance of arm’s length debt on the bond market. The specific areas considered are contributing to our knowledge in the fields of corporate finance and financial markets by considering explicitly firms’ primary market activities within the new market area. The first essay explores how reputation of an issuer affects its debt issuance. Essay two examines the choice of interest rate exposure on newly issued debt and the third and final essay explores pricing anomalies on corporate debt issues.
  • Gang, Ji (Svenska handelshögskolan, 2006)
    The negative relationship between economic growth and stock market return is not an anomaly according to evidence documented in many economies. It is argued that future economic growth is largely irrelevant for predicting future equity returns, since long-run equity returns depend mainly on dividend yields and the growth of per share dividends. The economic growth does result in a higher standard of living for consumers, but does not necessarily translate into higher returns for owners of the capital. The divergence in performance between the real sector and stock markets appears to support the above argument. However, this thesis strives to offer an alternative explanation to the apparent divergence within the framework of corporate governance. It argues that weak corporate governance standards in Chinese listed firms exacerbated by poor inventor protection results into a marginalized capital market. Each of the three essays in the thesis addresses one particular aspect of corporate governance on the Chinese stock market in a sequential way through gathering empirical evidence on three distinctive stock market activities. The first essay questions whether significant agency conflicts do exist by building a game on rights issues. It documents significant divergence in interests among shareholders holding different classes of shares. The second essay investigates the level of agency costs by examining value of control through constructing a sample of block transactions. It finds that block transactions that transfer ultimate control entail higher premiums. The third essay looks into possible avenues through which corporate governance standards could be improved by investigating the economic consequences of cross-listing on the Chinese stock market. It finds that, by adopting a higher disclosure standard through cross-listings, firms voluntarily commit themselves to reducing information asymmetry, and consequently command higher valuation than their counterparts.
  • Nandelstadh von, Alexander; Rosenberg, Matts (Swedish School of Economics and Business Administration, 2003)
    This paper examines the association between corporate governance attributes and firm performance of Finnish firms during 1990 – 2000. The empirical results suggest that corporate governance matters for firm performance. First, univariate test results indicate that firms characterized by a high (efficient) level of corporate governance have delivered greater stock returns, are higher valued based on the measure of Tobin’s Q, and exhibit higher ratios of cash flow to assets, on average, in comparison to their counterparts characterized by a low (inefficient) level of corporate governance. Second, controlling for a number of well-known determinants of stock returns, we find evidence that firms categorized by inefficient corporate governance have delivered inferior returns to shareholders during the investigation period. Finally, after controlling for several common determinants of firm value, we find that firms characterized by efficient corporate governance have been valued higher during the investigation period, measured by Tobin’s Q.
  • Ekholm, Anders; Nandelstadh von, Alexander (Svenska handelshögskolan, 2004)
    Inspired by the recent debate in the financial press, we set out to investigate if financial analysts warn their preferred customers of possible earnings forecast revisions. The issue is explored by monitoring investors’ trading behavior during the weeks prior to analyst earnings forecast revisions, using the unique official stock transactions data set from Finland. In summary, we do not find evidence of large investors systematically being warned of earnings forecast revisions. However, the results indicate that the very largest investors show trading behavior partly consistent with being informed of future earnings forecast revisions.
  • Rosenberg, Matts (Swedish School of Economics and Business Administration, 2002)
    This paper analyzes the effect of uncertainty on investment and labor demand for Finnish firms during the time period 1987 – 2000. Utilizing a stock return based measure of uncertainty decomposed into systematic and idiosyncratic components, the results reveal that idiosyncratic uncertainty significantly reduces both investment and labor demand. Idiosyncratic uncertainty seems to influence investment in the current period, whereas the depressing effect on labor demand appears with a one-year lag. The results provide support that the depressing effect of idiosyncratic uncertainty on investment is stronger for small firms in comparison to large firms. Some evidence is reported regarding differential effects of uncertainty on labor demand conditional on firm characteristics. Most importantly, the depressing effect of lagged idiosyncratic uncertainty on labor demand tends to be stronger for diversified firms compared with focused firms.
  • Rosenberg, Matts (Svenska handelshögskolan, 2004)
    Managerial pay-for-performance sensitivity has increased rapidly around the world. Early empirical research showed that pay-for-performance sensitivity resulting from stock ownership and stock options appeared to be quite low during the 1970s and early 1980s in the U.S. However, recent empirical research from the U.S. shows an enormous increase in pay-for-performance sensitivity. The global trend has also reached Finland, where stock options have become a major ingredient of executive compensation. The fact that stock options seem to be an appealing form of remuneration from a theoretical point of view combined with the observation that the use of this compensation form has increased significantly during the recent years, implies that research on the dynamics of stock option compensation is highly relevant for the academic community, as well as for practitioners and regulators. The research questions of the thesis are analyzed in four separate essays. The first essay examines whether stock option compensation practices of Finnish firms are consistent with predictions from principal-agent theory. The second essay explores one of the major puzzles in the compensation literature by studying determinants of stock option contract design. In theory, optimal contract design should vary according to firm characteristics. However, in the U.S., variation in contract design seems to be surprisingly low, a phenomenon generally attributed to tax and accounting considerations. In Finland, however, firms are not subject to stringent contracting restrictions, and the variation in contract design tends, in fact, to be quite substantial. The third essay studies the impact of price- and risk incentives arising from stock option compensation on firm investment. In addition, the essay explores one of the most debated questions in the literature, in particular, the relation between incentives and firm performance. Finally, several strands of literature in both economics and corporate finance hypothesize that economic uncertainty is related to corporate decision-making. Previous research has shown that risk tends to slow down firm investment. In the fourth essay, it is hypothesized that firm risk slows down growth from a more universal perspective. Consistent with this view, it is shown that risk not only tends to slow down firm investment, but also employment growth. Moreover, the essay explores whether the nature of firms’ compensation policies, in particular, whether firms make use of stock option compensation, affects the relation between risk and firm growth. In summary, the four essays contribute to the current understanding of stock options as a form of equity incentives, and how incentives and risk affect corporate decision-making. By this, the thesis promotes the knowledge related to the modern theory of the firm.
  • Maury, Benjamin (Svenska handelshögskolan, 2004)
    “Corporate governance deals with the ways in which suppliers of finance to firms assure themselves of getting a return on their investment” (Shleifer and Vishny (1997, p. 737). According to La Porta et al. (1999), research in corporate finance relevant for most countries should focus on the incentives and capabilities of controlling shareholders to treat themselves preferentially at the expense of minority shareholders. Accordingly, this thesis sets out to answer a number of research questions regarding the role of large shareholders in public firms that have received little attention in the literature so far. A common theme in the essays stems from the costs and benefits of individual large-block owners and the role of control contestability from the perspective of outside minority shareholders. The first essay empirically examines whether there are systematic performance differences between family controlled and nonfamily controlled firms in Western Europe. In contrast to the widely held view that family control penalizes firm value, the essay shows that publicly traded family firms have higher performance than comparable firms. In the second essay, we present both theoretical and empirical analysis on the effects of control contestability on firm valuation. Consistent with the theoretical model, the empirical results show that minority shareholders benefit from a more contestable control structure. The third essay explores the effects of individual large-block owners on top management turnover and board appointments in Finnish listed firms. The results indicate that firm performance is an important determinant for management and board restructurings. For certain types of turnover decisions the corporate governance structure influences the performance / turnover sensitivity. In the fourth essay, we investigate the relation between the governance structure and dividend policy in Finnish listed firms. We find evidence in support of the outcome agency model of dividends stating that lower agency conflicts should be associated with higher dividend payouts.
  • Al-Khail, Mohammed Aba (Svenska handelshögskolan, 2003)
    Investors significantly overweight domestic assets in their portfolios. This behavior which is commonly called “home bias” contradicts the prescriptions of portfolio theory. This thesis explores potential reasons for the “home bias” by examining the characteristics of the investing and the target countries and features of the interaction between them. A common theme of the four essays is a focus on the importance of information about foreign markets in explaining the share of these markets in investors’ portfolios. The results indicate that the size of the equity ownership in another country strongly relates to the distance to the financial capital of that country, and to trade in goods with and direct investments (FDI) to that country. The first essay empirically investigates the relationship between trade in real goods and portfolio investments. Overall, the evidence indicates a substantial role for trade in reducing the information cost relating to portfolio investments. The second essay examines the implications of the launch of the European Monetary Union (EMU) on international portfolio investments. The evidence on the allocation of Finnish international portfolio investments is more consistent with an information-based than a diversification motive explanation. The third essay employs new data for a large number of countries and further explores the role of trade on international portfolio investments. The results indicate that trade provides important information especially on firms in countries in which the corporate governance structure and the information environment of firms generate less reliable information. The fourth essay examines the relationship between direct investments (FDI) and portfolio investments. In contrast to the predications of portfolio theory, it provides evidence that FDI is a complement rather than a substitute for portfolio investments.
  • Ben Sita, Bernard (Svenska handelshögskolan, 2005)
    The purpose of this thesis is to examine the role of trade durations in price discovery. The motivation to use trade durations in the study of price discovery is that durations are robust to many microstructure effects that introduce a bias in the measurement of returns volatility. Another motivation to use trade durations in the study of price discovery is that it is difficult to think of economic variables, which really are useful in the determination of the source of volatility at arbitrarily high frequencies. The dissertation contains three essays. In the first essay, the role of trade durations in price discovery is examined with respect to the volatility pattern of stock returns. The theory on volatility is associated with the theory on the information content of trade, dear to the market microstructure theory. The first essay documents that the volatility per transaction is related to the intensity of trade, and a strong relationship between the stochastic process of trade durations and trading variables. In the second essay, the role of trade durations in price discovery is examined with respect to the quantification of risk due to a trading volume of a certain size. The theory on volume is intrinsically associated with the stock volatility pattern. The essay documents that volatility increases, in general, when traders choose to trade with large transactions. In the third essay, the role of trade durations in price discovery is examined with respect to the information content of a trade. The theory on the information content of a trade is associated with the theory on the rate of price revisions in the market. The essay documents that short durations are associated with information. Thus, traders are compensated for responding quickly to information
  • Lindqvist, Thomas; Söderman, Ronnie (Svenska handelshögskolan, 2000)
    In this paper, we examine the predictability of observed volatility smiles in three major European index options markets, utilising the historical return distributions of the respective underlying assets. The analysis involves an application of the Black (1976) pricing model adjusted in accordance with the Jarrow-Rudd methodology as proposed in 1982. Thereby we adjust the expected future returns for the third and fourth central moments as these represent deviations from normality in the distributions of observed returns. Thus, they are considered one possible explanation to the existence of the smile. The obtained results indicate that the inclusion of the higher moments in the pricing model to some extent reduces the volatility smile, compared with the unadjusted Black-76 model. However, as the smile is partly a function of supply, demand, and liquidity, and as such intricate to model, this modification does not appear sufficient to fully capture the characteristics of the smile.
  • Söderman, Ronnie (Svenska handelshögskolan, 2000)
    The objective of this paper is to investigate and model the characteristics of the prevailing volatility smiles and surfaces on the DAX- and ESX-index options markets. Continuing on the trend of Implied Volatility Functions, the Standardized Log-Moneyness model is introduced and fitted to historical data. The model replaces the constant volatility parameter of the Black & Scholes pricing model with a matrix of volatilities with respect to moneyness and maturity and is tested out-of-sample. Considering the dynamics, the results show support for the hypotheses put forward in this study, implying that the smile increases in magnitude when maturity and ATM volatility decreases and that there is a negative/positive correlation between a change in the underlying asset/time to maturity and implied ATM volatility. Further, the Standardized Log-Moneyness model indicates an improvement to pricing accuracy compared to previous Implied Volatility Function models, however indicating that the parameters of the models are to be re-estimated continuously for the models to fully capture the changing dynamics of the volatility smiles.
  • Pasternack, Daniel (Svenska handelshögskolan, 2000)
    In this paper I investigate the exercise policy, and the market reaction to that, of the executive stock option holders in Finland. The empirical tests are conducted with aggregated firm level data from 34 firms and 41 stock option programs. I find some evidence of an inverse relation between the exercise intensity of the options holders and the future abnormal return of the company share price. This finding is supported by the view that information about future company prospect seems to be the only theoretical attribute that could delay the exercise of the options. Moreover, a high concentration of exercises in the beginning of the exercise window is predicted and the market is expected to react to deviations from this. The empirical findings however show that the market does not react homogenously to the information revealed by the late exercises.
  • Pasternack, Daniel (Svenska handelshögskolan, 2002)
    This study contributes to the executive stock option literature by looking at factors driving the introduction of such a compensation form on a firm level. Using a discrete decision model I test the explanatory power of several agency theory based variables and find strong support for predictability of the form of executive compensation. Ownership concentration and liquidity are found to have a significant negative effect on the probability of stock option adoption. Furtermore, I find evidence of CEO ownership, institutional ownership, investment intensity, and historical market return having a significant and a positive relationship to the likelihood of adopting a executive stock option program.
  • Felixson, Karl (Svenska handelshögskolan, 2004)
    Functioning capital markets are a crucial part of a competitive economy since they provide the mechanisms to allocate resources. In order to be well functioning a capital market has to be efficient. Market efficiency is defined as a market where prices at any time fully reflect all available information. Basically, this means that abnormal returns cannot be predicted since they are dependent on future, presently unknown, information. The debate of market efficiency has been going on for several decades. Most academics today would probably agree that financial markets are reasonably efficient since virtually nobody has been able to achieve continuous abnormal positive returns. However, it is clear that a set of return anomalies exists, although they are apparently to small to enable substantial economic profit. Moreover, these anomalies can often be attributed to market design. The motivation for this work is to expand the knowledge of short-term trading patterns and to offer some explanations for these patterns. In the first essay the return pattern during the day is examined. On average stock prices move during two time periods of the day, namely, immediately after the opening and around the formal close of the market. Since stock prices, on average, move upwards these abnormal returns are generally positive and cause the distinct U-shape of intraday returns. In the second essay the results in the first essay are examined further. The return pattern around the former close is shown to partly be the result of manipulative action by market participants. In the third essay the focus is shifted towards trading patterns of the underlying stocks on days when index options and index futures on the stocks expire. Generally no expiration day effect was found. However, some indication of an expiration day effect was found when a large amount of open in- or at-the-money contracts existed. Also, the effects were likelier to be found for shares with high index-weight but fairly low trading volume. Last, in the forth essay the attention is turned to the behaviour of different tax clienteles around the dividend ex-day. Two groups of investors showed abnormal trading behaviour. Domestic non-financial investors, especially domestic companies, showed a dividend capturing behaviour, i.e. buying cum-dividend and selling ex-dividend shares. The opposite behaviour was found for foreign investors and domestic financial institutions. The effect was more notable for high yield, high volume stocks.