Flow-Based Asset Pricing: Maximum Price Impact Ratio
63 Pages Posted: 6 May 2022 Last revised: 15 Jun 2022
Date Written: June 13, 2022
We analyze the flow-driven fluctuations of the cross section of asset prices. We take the stance that price impacts of uninformative flows arise as marginal investors' risk compensation. We show that shorting the portfolio that incurs the maximum price impact for a given level of fundamental risk is the most efficient trading-against-flow strategy. To form this strategy, we build a new model of common factors of flows and common factors of fundamental returns and estimate the model using U.S. equity mutual fund flows into Fama-French three factors. Our strategy increases the out-of-sample annualized Sharpe ratio of 159 firm characteristics-based anomaly portfolios by an average of 0.3. Our evidence shows that risk-driven price impacts depend only on factor flows but not on idiosyncratic flows.
Keywords: asset pricing, cross section, flow, price impact, risk
JEL Classification: G12
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