The Geography Of Investment: Informed Trading And Asset Prices
Joshua D. Coval
Harvard Business School - Finance Unit; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)
Tobias J. Moskowitz
AQR Capital; University of Chicago - Booth School of Business; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)
CRSP Working Paper No. 502
This paper uses geography to shed light on the role of asymmetric information in asset pricing. Demonstrating that investors possess significant informational advantages in evaluating nearby investments, we find that active mutual fund managers overweight proximate firms in their portfolios and earn substantial abnormal returns in local holdings. These findings are more pronounced among funds which are small, have few holdings, and operate out of remote locations. Aggregating across all funds, we use the fraction of a stock's shares held by local investors as a measure of the information asymmetry in its investor base. We find that a firm's degree of local ownership is positively related to the cross-section of expected returns, even when controlling for other factors known to explain return variation. The results document new evidence of informed trading and establish a link between such trading and asset prices.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 40
JEL Classification: G12
Date posted: March 15, 2000
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