Short-Term Return Reversal: The Long and the Short of It
35 Pages Posted: 15 Mar 2012 Last revised: 6 Dec 2012
Date Written: September 25, 2012
Stock returns unexplained by “fundamentals”, such as cash flow news, are more likely to reverse in the short run than those linked to fundamental news. Making novel use of analyst forecast revisions to measure cash flow news, a simple enhanced reversal strategy generates a risk-adjusted return four times the size of the standard reversal strategy. Importantly, isolating the component of past returns not driven by fundamentals provides a cleaner setting for testing existing theories of short-term reversals. Using this approach, we find that both liquidity shocks and investor sentiment contribute to the observed short term reversal, but in different ways: Specifically, the reversal profit is attributable to liquidity shocks on the long side as fire sales more likely demand liquidity; and it is attributable to investor sentiment on the short side as short-sale constraints prevent the immediate elimination of overvaluation.
Keywords: Short run reversal, liquidity, sentiment, fundamental news
JEL Classification: G12
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation