Journal of Applied Finance & Banking

The Performance Analysis of Trading Strategies Based on Insider Silence

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  • Abstract

     

    Seyhun (1986) argues that insider buying predicts positive future returns, while insider selling reveals only a slight signal to predict negative future returns, possibly to satisfy liquidity needs. Gao et al. (2021) find that insiders are afraid of exposure to litigation risk, they neither sell their stocks on bad news nor buy, so insiders keep silent. Based on Gao et al. (2021), we construct the portfolio, which is to buy the “insider sell” group and to sell the “insider silence” group. According to Johnson and So (2012), the O/S portfolio is constructed based on the ratio of individual stock options to the trading volume of the underlying stock. F/S portfolio is constructed by the ratio of individual stock futures to the trading volume of the underlying stock. We find that under the holding period of more than one year, the performance of insider trading strategy is better than other strategies. Specifically, “buying insider purchases and selling insider sales” strategies are more profitable with longer holding periods. Moreover, the longer the holding period of OS and FS strategies, the greater the negative return effect.

     

    JEL classification numbers: G11, G12, G14.

    Keywords: Insider trading, Insider silence, OS strategy, FS strategy, and one- dimensional strategy.