Asset Returns, Discount Rate Changes, and Market Efficiency

  • Published: Apr 30, 2012
  • Pages: 1141-1158
  • DOI: 10.1111/j.1540-6261.1985.tb02368.x


The primary purpose of this paper is to reconcile the previous findings of discount rate endogeneity with the presence of discount rate announcement effects in securities markets. The crux of this reconciliation is the distinction between “technical” discount rate changes that are endogenous and “nontechnical” changes which contain some informative policy implications. In essence, we attempt to separate expected discount rate changes from unexpected changes, or equivalently, the expected component of discount rate changes from the unexpected component. If markets are efficient, the former should have no announcement effects while the latter may be associated with an announcement effect. Accordingly, the focus of the empirical analysis is on the interaction between discount rate exogeneity, the specific monetary policy regime, and accouncement effects. In addition, we examine whether the behavior of these markets in the postannouncement period is consistent with the rapid price adjustment implied by market efficiency.

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