Are Wall Street Analyst Rankings Popularity Contest?
41 Pages Posted: 17 Mar 2006 Last revised: 19 Oct 2014
Date Written: August 1, 2007
We investigate the (sell-side) analyst rankings of Institutional Investor (I/I) and The Wall Street Journal (WSJ) using data from 1993-2005. We find that factors with a primary component of recognition are the most important determinants of the rankings, although performance measures are statistically significant determinants in some cases. The single exception to this finding is with existing WSJ stars, where industry-adjusted-investment-recommendation performance is the only significant determinant of repeating as a star. Further, in the year after becoming stars, the recommendations of WSJ stars are significantly worse than those of non-stars; and the recommendations and earnings forecasts of I/I stars, as well as the earnings forecasts of WSJ stars, are not significantly different from those of non-stars. We conclude that these rankings are largely "popularity contests."
Keywords: analyst, all-star, All-American, Institutional Investor, Wall Street Journal, earnings forecasts, recommendation
JEL Classification: G24, J30
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation