Discovering and Disentangling the Effects of US Macro-Announcements for European Stocks

32 Pages Posted: 7 Feb 2015 Last revised: 16 Nov 2015

Tobias Rühl

University of Duisburg-Essen

Michael Stein

University of Duisburg-Essen

Multiple version iconThere are 2 versions of this paper

Date Written: October 2015


In this study, we analyze the effect of US macroeconomic announcements on European stock returns, return volatility and bid-ask spreads using intraday data. We find that certain announcements are generally more important to the European stock market than others, and that the direction of news is important for returns. We provide first evidence that a stock-individual analysis is crucial to disentangle overall market reactions from stock-specific impacts and that effects vary dramatically between stocks. The analysis of quoted spreads reveals that return volatility affects the spread size positively, and that spreads are systematically higher directly after news releases. This is followed by structurally lower spreads, indicating quickly decreasing asymmetric information in the market after announcements. Additionally, spreads tend to react to announcements even if the returns or the volatility of the underlying stock is not significantly affected. This points at the importance of the analysis of news events beyond return and volatility analyses.

Keywords: Macroeconomic announcement effects; European stock market; market microstructure; intraday analysis; bid-ask spreads

JEL Classification: E44, G14, G15

Suggested Citation

Rühl, Tobias and Stein, Michael, Discovering and Disentangling the Effects of US Macro-Announcements for European Stocks (October 2015). Available at SSRN: or

Tobias Rühl

University of Duisburg-Essen ( email )

Universitätsstr. 12
Essen, 45117

Michael Stein (Contact Author)

University of Duisburg-Essen ( email )

Universitätsst. 12
Duisburg, 45117


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