The Information Content of Quarterly Earnings in Syndicated Bank Loan Prices
48 Pages Posted: 3 Nov 2008
Date Written: August 2004
We examine the information content of quarterly earnings announcements in the syndicated bank loan market, a hybrid public/private debt market that is exclusively comprised of informed institutional participants. In contrast to the literature on equity price reactions to earnings announcements, we find that bank loan returns experience no significant response on earnings announcement dates. However, we do find significant price movements in the secondary loan market four weeks prior to earnings announcement dates, around the time of the monthly covenant reports to members of the syndicate. Moreover, we find that the information content in syndicated bank loan prices is most pronounced for borrowers with predominantly intangible assets that experience declining earnings. Thus, we find evidence that when earnings announcements convey relevant information about the borrowing firm (i.e., for informationally opaque firms with declining creditworthiness), the syndicated bank loan market expeditiously incorporates that information into prices.
Keywords: earnings announcements, syndicated bank loans
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