The Trades of Market Makers: An Empirical Analysis of NYSE Specialists

  • Published: Apr 30, 2012
  • Pages: 1565-1593
  • DOI: 10.1111/j.1540-6261.1993.tb05121.x


This paper presents a transaction‐level empirical analysis of the trading activities of New York Stock Exchange specialists. The main findings of the analysis are the following. Adjustment lags in inventories vary across stocks, and are in some cases as long as one or two months. Decomposition of specialist trading profits by trading horizon shows that the principal source of these profits is short term. An analysis of the dynamic relations among inventories, signed order flow, and quote changes suggests that trades in which the specialist participates have a higher immediate impact on the quotes than trades with no specialist participation.

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