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Economic policy uncertainty, market returns and expected return predictability

Frederick A. Adjei (Department of Economics and Finance, Southeast Missouri State University, Cape Girardeau, Missouri, USA)
Mavis Adjei (Southern Illinois University Carbondale, Carbondale, Illinois, USA)

Journal of Financial Economic Policy

ISSN: 1757-6385

Article publication date: 7 August 2017

Abstract

Purpose

Using the economic policy uncertainty (EPU) index as a proxy for the level of EPU, we study the impact of the level of EPU on the conditional mean of market returns and we examine the predictive power of EPU on future market returns.

Design/methodology/approach

We employ a GARCH-in-Mean model with exogenous variables.

Findings

The results show that even after controlling for business cycle effects, EPU is inversely related to contemporaneous market returns. Particularly, the authors find that the negative impact of EPU subsists only during recessions or recessionary states of the economy, and has no discernible effects during expansionary periods.

Originality/value

This is the first study to examine the predictive power of EPU on future market returns.

Keywords

Citation

Adjei, F.A. and Adjei, M. (2017), "Economic policy uncertainty, market returns and expected return predictability", Journal of Financial Economic Policy, Vol. 9 No. 3, pp. 242-259. https://doi.org/10.1108/JFEP-11-2016-0074

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2017, Emerald Publishing Limited