The purpose of this paper is to offer an alternative approach to measure the cost-benefit tradeoff, by analyzing stockholders’ reactions to the announcement and vote on the proposed rule. More specifically, the authors use event study methodology to investigate the stock price reaction on two key dates; that is, the announcement date and the voting date of the proposed short-term borrowing disclosure regulation, and argue that positive abnormal stock returns indicate that the expected benefits of the regulation outweigh the compliance costs. A negative reaction would indicate that, in the eyes of investors, the costs of compliance exceed the expected benefits.
The authors use event study analysis and apply the market model to equal-weighted portfolios of 2,450 financial and 3,985 non-financial US firms to calculate mean cumulative abnormal stock returns (MCARs, hereafter) on the announcement and voting dates. Then, the authors conduct mean difference tests on firm-level MCARs across three event windows, that is, (−30,−1), (0,+1) and (+2,+30), to confirm if the MCARs of financial firms are different from those of non-financial firms on both the announcement and the voting dates. Finally, robustness tests are performed with alternate benchmark, using value-weighted portfolios, for the market.
The authors find that the market reaction is positive and significant at the announcement date and negative and significant at the voting date of the proposed regulation of short-term borrowing disclosure regulation. Overall, the paper documents a positive market reaction, indicating the usefulness of the disclosure from the vantage point of users. Examining and comparing the results for various subsets, including commercial banks and saving institutions, bank holding companies, size quartiles, and exchange listed and OTC registrants, the authors find that a “one-size-fits-all” approach to regulation is undesirable.
This is first empirical study, to best of the authors’ knowledge, to explore stockholder reaction to a proposed, rather than an enforced, Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) regulation and may contribute to the SEC’s final decision on the rule. Second, given a dissimilar reaction from investors of different firms, the results suggest that the SEC needs to reconsider its one-size-fit-all approach for the proposed rule. Finally, because the proposed disclosure would affect all SEC registrants, the economic implications of the findings are important not only for stockholders, but also for regulators, as they attempt to manage systematic risk and optimize the level of market intervention.