Industry familiarity and trading: Evidence from the personal portfolios of industry insiders

Itzhak Ben-David, Justin Birru, Andrea Rossi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations

Abstract

We study whether industry familiarity is an advantage in stock trading by exploring the trading patterns of industry insiders in their own personal portfolios. To do so, we identify accounts of industry insiders in a large data set provided by a retail discount broker. We find that insiders trade firms from their own industry more frequently. Furthermore, they earn abnormal returns exclusively when trading own-industry stocks, especially obscure stocks (small, low analyst coverage, high volatility). In a battery of tests, we find no evidence of the use of private information. The results are most consistent with the interpretation that industry familiarity is an advantage in stock trading.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)49-75
Number of pages27
JournalJournal of Financial Economics
Volume132
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 2019
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Insiders
  • Investor experience
  • Officers and directors
  • Retail trading

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Accounting
  • Finance
  • Economics and Econometrics
  • Strategy and Management

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