Is All Disaggregation Good for Investors? Evidence From Earnings Announcements
52 Pages Posted: 26 May 2016 Last revised: 5 Sep 2019
Date Written: September 4, 2019
Prior work suggests that greater earnings disaggregation in financial statements leads to favorable market outcomes. This perspective is based on a fundamental presumption that the disaggregation separates earnings components with heterogeneous characteristics. We hypothesize that the disaggregation of homogeneous earnings components is associated with greater investor opinion divergence and a less efficient market response to the earnings announcement. We estimate persistence regressions at the industry level and classify earnings components with significant differential persistence relative to sales as heterogeneous and components with insignificant differential persistence relative to sales as homogeneous. Consistent with our hypothesis, we find a significant positive relation between the level of homogeneous earnings disaggregation and investor disagreement around earnings announcements. We also find significantly greater post-earnings announcement drift after earnings announcements with greater homogeneous earnings disaggregation. This evidence is consistent with homogeneous earnings disaggregation hindering investors’ ability to efficiently impound earnings information into price.
Keywords: Disaggregation, Opinion divergence, Market efficiency, Earnings announcements
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