When Do Stock Analysts Find Bond Rating Changes Informative?
Accounting and Business Research, Forthcoming
Posted: 30 Jan 2015
Date Written: January 29, 2015
Credit rating agencies (CRAs) have considerable privileged access to corporate management and are therefore a potentially important source of information to the equity market. We study how stock analysts incorporate bond ratings in their earnings forecasts. We develop an economic framework for why equity analysts might look to CRAs as an information source, especially after Reg. FD. Using this framework, we characterize the association between ratings changes and earnings forecast revisions surrounding these changes. We examine whether the extent to which equity analysts glean information from ratings changes is related to the extent and importance of information conveyed in the ratings change and analysts’ information uncertainty. We find that characteristics we examine are strongly related to stock analysts’ use of information in rating downgrades.
Keywords: Equity analysts, Debt rating changes, Analyst forecast revisions, Regulation Fair Disclosure
JEL Classification: M40
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