Does the CDS Market Anticipate Changes in Firm Risk?

47 Pages Posted: 5 Apr 2016 Last revised: 1 Mar 2019

See all articles by Florian Kiesel

Florian Kiesel

Grenoble Ecole de Management

Sascha Kolaric

Technische Universität Darmstadt

Lars Norden

Getulio Vargas Foundation (FGV) - Brazilian School of Public and Business Administration (EBAPE)

Dirk Schiereck

Darmstadt University of Technology

Date Written: October 22, 2018

Abstract

We investigate whether the CDS market anticipates changes in firm risk, exploiting the uncertainty about the outcomes of credit rating reviews (rating changes or confirmations). We find that CDS spreads of firms under review for downgrade move systematically into the direction implied by the review outcome: they widen before downgrades and tighten before confirmations. Moreover, CDS spreads start widening before rating reviews that result in downgrades and before deteriorations of firms’ key financial ratios. We do not find similar effects for firms’ stock returns. The evidence suggests that the CDS market anticipates firms’ financial decisions that increase default risk.

Keywords: Credit default swaps, credit risk, informational efficiency, credit ratings, rating reviews

JEL Classification: G14, G24, G32, G33

Suggested Citation

Kiesel, Florian and Kolaric, Sascha and Norden, Lars and Schiereck, Dirk, Does the CDS Market Anticipate Changes in Firm Risk? (October 22, 2018). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2756900 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2756900

Florian Kiesel (Contact Author)

Grenoble Ecole de Management ( email )

12 Rue Pierre Semard
Grenoble, Cedex 01 38000
France

Sascha Kolaric

Technische Universität Darmstadt ( email )

Hochschulstrasse 1
Darmstadt, 64289
Germany

HOME PAGE: http://www.cofi.wi.tu-darmstadt.de/team_cofi/wimi_cofi/kolaric_cofi/index.en.jsp

Lars Norden

Getulio Vargas Foundation (FGV) - Brazilian School of Public and Business Administration (EBAPE) ( email )

Rua Jornalista Orlando Dantas 30
Rio de Janeiro, 22231-010
Brazil
+552130832431 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://www.larsnorden.de

Dirk Schiereck

Darmstadt University of Technology ( email )

Universitaets- und Landesbibliothek Darmstadt
Magdalenenstrasse 8
Darmstadt, Hesse D-64289
Germany

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