Evidence on the Information Content of Text in Analyst Reports
50 Pages Posted: 19 Jul 2011 Last revised: 28 Aug 2014
Date Written: April 24, 2014
We document that textual discussions in a sample of 363,952 analyst reports provide information to investors beyond that in the contemporaneously released earnings forecasts, stock recommendations, and target prices, and also assist investors in interpreting these signals. Cross-sectionally, we find that investors react more strongly to negative than to positive text, suggesting that analysts are especially important in propagating bad news. Additional evidence indicates that analyst report text is more useful when it places more emphasis on nonfinancial topics, is written more assertively and concisely, and when the perceived validity of other information signals in the same report is low. Finally, analyst report text is shown to have predictive value for future earnings growth in the subsequent five years.
Keywords: analyst report, naïve Bayes, textual analysis, information content
JEL Classification: D82, M41, G14, C11, K22
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