Signal strength adjustment behavior: Evidence from share repurchases

Koji Ota*, David Lau, Hironori Kawase

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

This paper extends the signaling hypothesis by investigating the signal strength adjustment behavior with respect to the announcement of an open market repurchase (OMR). Given that an OMR is a non-binding commitment for the repurchasing firm, the stock market would likely scrutinize the credibility of the undervaluation signal from the OMR announcement of the firm. This may compel the manager to engage in various mechanisms in order to strengthen the undervaluation signal of the OMR announcement. This paper investigates whether managers of repurchasing firms would modify the terms of the OMR program when the simultaneous announcements of bad news threaten the credibility of the signal from the OMR announcements. Consistent with our signal strength adjustment hypothesis, we find that managers of repurchasing firms increase (shorten) the repurchase plan size (period) with the magnitude of bad news in the simultaneous announcements. Our results also show that the stock market reacts positively to the signal strength adjustments, indicating that they are informative to the market. These results hold after using various techniques to control for sample selection bias.

Original languageEnglish
Article number106545
JournalJournal of Banking and Finance
Volume143
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2022 Oct

Keywords

  • Share repurchase
  • Signal strength adjustment
  • Signaling hypothesis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Finance
  • Economics and Econometrics

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