No. 38: To share or not to share? Financial analysts’ questioning in conference calls

Abstract

We study whether superior financial analysts strategically reveal less information in earnings conference calls. To the extent that analysts’ relative information advantages translate into desirable professional outcomes, we expect superior analysts to be mindful of safeguarding their information advantages when interacting with peers. Consistent with expectations, we find that superior analysts (measured as analysts with higher ex-ante forecast accuracy) share relatively less information (measured as the cosine modification between ana-lysts’ questions and the management presentation) in conference calls. Moreover, our findings imply that analysts’ information sharing increases in ex-ante information uncertainty and decreases in analysts’ competition. Finally, we show that superior analysts benefit marginally less from sharing information. Collectively, our results shed light on the role of analysts as information intermediaries in shaping firms’ information environments.

Participating Institutions

TRR 266‘s main locations are Paderborn University (Coordinating University), HU Berlin, and University of Mannheim. All three locations have been centers for accounting and tax research for many years. They are joined by researchers from LMU Munich, Frankfurt School of Finance and Management, WHU – Otto Beisheim School of Management, ESMT Berlin and Goethe University Frankfurt who share the same research agenda.