Title

New Evidence on Psychology and Stock Returns

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

7-26-2017

Publication Title

Journal of Behavioral Finance

DOI

10.1080/15427560.2017.1344676

ISSN

1542-7579

Abstract

This article provides econometric evidence on the importance of psychological considerations for aggregate stock price fluctuations. To this end, a novel measure of stock market sentiment, dubbed the Net Psychology Index (NPI), based on information contained in Bloomberg News's end-of-the-day stock market reports, is confronted with a battery of multivariate empirical analyses. Results suggest that NPI is statistically different from popular sentiment proxies within the literature. NPI exhibits predictive power, increasing stock returns in the short run with this impact dissipating in the medium term. NPI does not exhibit asymmetric effects on returns for size- and momentum-related portfolios. A trading strategy based on NPI generates a statistically significant positive monthly return. Recursive out-of-sample fit analyses report a lower standard deviation of forecasting errors for NPI-based returns models versus competing accounts.

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