Essays on Capital Markets

  • Author / Creator
    Liang, Claire Y.C.
  • Capital markets play an important role in the modern economy. This thesis consists of two essays on capital markets. In the first essay (Chapter 1), I study the effect of systematic news on a prominent capital markets anomaly, post-earnings announcement drift (PEAD), and use the effect to examine competing explanations of PEAD. In the second essay (Chapter 2), I study the real effects of capital markets development. The abstracts from each of the essays are as follows: Chapter 1 Recent studies find that post-earnings announcement drift (PEAD) is related to the business cycle. Using quarterly data on U.S. public firms from 1973:Q1 to 2011:Q3, I find that PEAD is stronger when drift-period systematic news agrees with a firm’s prior earnings news; PEAD is weaker, insignificant, or even reversed when drift-period systematic news disagrees with a firm’s prior earnings news. The relation between systematic news and PEAD is consistent with the rational learning hypothesis, but cannot be explained by conventional behavioral models built on investor irrationality. The study suggests a channel linking PEAD to the business cycle. It provides empirical evidence that helps distinguish the rational learning hypothesis from conventional behavioral models, which previous studies attempting to use the rational learning theory to explain PEAD have found difficult. The findings indicate that anomalies need not imply investor irrationality. The effects of systematic shocks and information uncertainty on asset prices not captured by existing models offer a promising new direction for exploring PEAD as well as other anomalies. Chapter 2 U.S. financial development varies a good deal over the last half century, primarily increasing since the 1980s. We ask whether this variation had consequences for the real economy. Difference-in-difference tests reveal that increases in financial development have disproportionate effects on industries that depend more on external finance. Higher financial development forecasts externally dependent industries using more external finance, having higher turnover of leading businesses, greater variation in firm-growth rates, more new firms entering, more mature firms exiting, lower concentration, and at the aggregate level more innovation and faster growth. The mosaic of our evidence is consistent with a Schumpeterian framework linking the supply of finance to competition, innovation, and growth. Our findings suggest that the growth in finance had some real effects that are socially beneficial.

  • Subjects / Keywords
  • Graduation date
  • Type of Item
  • Degree
    Doctor of Philosophy
  • DOI
  • License
    This thesis is made available by the University of Alberta Libraries with permission of the copyright owner solely for non-commercial purposes. This thesis, or any portion thereof, may not otherwise be copied or reproduced without the written consent of the copyright owner, except to the extent permitted by Canadian copyright law.
  • Language
  • Institution
    University of Alberta
  • Degree level
  • Department
  • Specialization
    • Finance
  • Supervisor / co-supervisor and their department(s)
  • Examining committee members and their departments
    • Mehrotra, Vikas (Finance and Statistical Analysis)
    • Young, Denise (Economics)
    • Yeung, Eric (Cornell University)
    • McLean, David (Finance and Statistical Analysis)
    • Morck, Randall (Finance and Statistical Analysis)