Information attributes, information asymmetry and industry sector returns

Narelle Gordon*, Edward Watts, Qiongbing Wu

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


We examine whether the probability of informed trading ('PIN') is a determinant of stock returns in Australia, an alternative market with considerably different information attributes to the U.S. Uniquely, we contrast PIN's price effect for the country's historically dichotomous sectors, resources and industrials. Using data for the period from 1996 to 2010, we find a significantly positive relationship between PIN and expected returns among industrials sector stocks, providing evidence in support of Easley and O'Hara (2004). We observe no PIN premium among resources sector stocks and among those with no record of operating revenues, both notable for their speculative nature and uncertainty about true asset values. Our results are consistent with previous empirical evidence that documents strong investor behavioural biases in valuing extremely uncertain stocks or hard-to-value stocks (Kumar, 2009). Our findings shed light on the existing mixed evidence that a strong PIN premium exists in NYSE and AMEX but not in NASDAQ where high-tech stocks are prevalent, and suggest that caution is needed when applying PIN in the pricing of highly speculative stocks.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)156-175
Number of pages20
JournalPacific-Basin Finance Journal
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2014


  • PIN
  • Information asymmetry
  • Information attributes
  • Speculative stocks
  • Sector returns
  • G12
  • G14


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