Year‐End Tax‐Induced Sales and Stock Market Seasonality


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The paper relates two phenomena in the stock market: the high return during the month of January and the apparent existence of widespread sales of stocks for tax purposes towards the end of the fiscal year. The findings suggest that, due to the tax‐induced sales, the price of many stocks over the last 35 years was temporarily depressed in December but recovered in the following January. This price recovery is a major contributor to the high returns observed in January. The tax effect is present in firms of all sizes but much more pronounced for small firms. The analysis also indicates that a more precise identification of the tax‐switch candidates may prove that the tax‐induced sales are, in fact, the sole contributor to the high January's returns. 1983 The American Finance Association

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)171-185
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of Finance
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 1983


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