Pseudo Market Timing and the Long‐Run Underperformance of IPOs

  • Author(s): Paul Schultz
  • Published: Mar 21, 2003
  • Pages: 483-518
  • DOI: 10.1111/1540-6261.00535

Numerous studies document long‐run underperformance by firms following equity offerings. This paper shows that underperformance is very likely to be observed ex‐post in an efficient market. The premise is that more firms issue equity at higher stock prices even though they cannot predict future returns. Ex‐post, issuers seem to time the market because offerings cluster at market peaks. Simulations based on 1973 through 1997 data reveal that when ex‐ante expected abnormal returns are zero, median ex‐post underperformance for equity issuers will be significantly negative in event‐time. Using calendar‐time returns solves the problem.

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