This paper examines possible explanations for “winner–loser reversals” in the national stock market indices of 16 countries. There is no evidence that loser countries are riskier than winner countries either in terms of standard deviations, covariance with the world market or other risk factors, or performance in adverse economic states of the world. While there is evidence that small markets are subject to larger reversals than large markets, perhaps because of some form of market imperfection, the reversals are not just a small-market phenomenon. The apparent anomaly of winner-loser reversals in national market indices therefore remains unresolved.
This paper examines the performance of emerging market bank stocks around the time of rating changes by major international agencies. The data suggest that downgrades on average have followed periods of negative cumulative abnormal returns for banks, although upgrades have not followed periods of positive returns. More important, stock prices either do not respond to rating changes or respond in the opposite direction to what would be expected if announcements conveyed value-relevant information. The paper concludes that there are limits to the extent that supervisors in emerging markets can rely on market participants to monitor the safety and soundness of banks.
This paper models the idiosyncratic or asset-specific return of an asset as the return on a portfolio that is long in that asset and short in other assets in the same class, thereby removing the common components of returns. This is the type of “hedged” position that is held by relative-value investors. Weekly returns data for seven different asset classes suggest that idiosyncratic risk is: higher at times of large return outcomes for the asset class as a whole; positively autocorrelated; and correlated across different asset classes. The implications for risk management are discussed.
This paper is a response to the literature that tests for cointegration between national stock market indices. It argues that apparent findings of cointegration in other studies may often be due to the use of asymptotic, rather than small-sample, critical values. In fact, economic theory suggests that cointegration is unlikely to be observed in efficient markets. However, this paper finds some evidence for the long-horizon predictability of relative returns, and the existence of “winner-loser” reversals across 16 national equity markets. A conclusion is that national stock market indices include a common world component and two country-specific components, one permanent and one transitory.
Using company-level data, this paper examines the relative stock-market performance of firms with different foreign-exchange exposures around the time of the 1994/95 Mexican crisis. Contrary to what one might have expected given the alleged peso overvaluation, exporting firms outperformed the market beginning in late 1993. Although interest rates fail to show a clear confidence loss in the exchange rate regime, the relative performance of net exporters suggests that expectations of devaluation increased continuously. The methodology presented is relevant beyond the Mexican case: sectoral differences in stock market performance may constitute valuable leading indicators of exchange rate changes in emerging markets.
This paper reviews and draws lessons from the stabilization and reform program that Korea implemented in response to the 1997-98 crisis. The economy recovered quickly from the deep recession in 1998 and its vulnerability to a balance of payments crisis has been reduced sharply. Significant progress has also been made in stabilizing the financial system and addressing corporate distress, and wide-ranging reforms have made Korea’s economy more open, competitive, and market driven. Notwithstanding these achievements, more needs to be done before the soundness of the corporate and financial sectors is firmly established.