How firms strategically disclose Information through selected channels

59 Pages Posted: 20 Apr 2021

See all articles by Wolfgang Breuer

Wolfgang Breuer

RWTH Aachen University

Anthony Haake

RWTH Aachen University - Department of Finance

Bertram I. Steininger

Royal Institute of Technology (KTH)

Date Written: March 1, 2021


This paper examines firms’ information disclosure through different channels (earnings conference call and earnings press release) and corresponding investor reactions. By drawing from a theory about e-communication, we predict that earnings conference calls induce less processing costs to investors than earnings press releases. Hence, disclosing through it increases the stock price impact and decreases the communicational ambiguity of information. Consistently, when comparing these channels, we find that firms distribute positive information through earnings conference calls and negative information through earnings press releases to investors. Firms that use a positive tone in earnings conference calls increase the stock market reaction sixfold compared to earnings press releases. When firms distribute information, the tone and readability of their calls improve while these characteristics of earnings press releases deteriorate. Also, firms tend to distribute less information through conference calls when earnings exceed benchmarks but more when future performance is good. A portfolio – that holds the quintile of firms that distribute the most information through distinct channels – yields significant abnormal returns (equal to 5 % p.a.).

Keywords: conference calls, press releases, textual analysis, management language, stock market reac-tion

JEL Classification: G10, G14, G40, G41

Suggested Citation

Breuer, Wolfgang and Haake, Anthony and Steininger, Bertram I., How firms strategically disclose Information through selected channels (March 1, 2021). Available at SSRN: or

Wolfgang Breuer

RWTH Aachen University ( email )

Templergraben 55
D-52056 Aachen, 52056

Anthony Haake

RWTH Aachen University - Department of Finance ( email )

Templergraben 55
52056 Aachen, 52056

Bertram I. Steininger (Contact Author)

Royal Institute of Technology (KTH) ( email )


Do you have a job opening that you would like to promote on SSRN?

Paper statistics

Abstract Views
PlumX Metrics