Monday, 15 February 2010

Are Tobin's q good indication for overvaluation or undervaluation?

In their book Valuing Wall Street published in early 2000, Andrew Smithers and Stephen Wright claim that the q ratio popularized by Nobel laureate James Tobin reliably identifies periods of extreme overvaluation and undervaluation in stock prices. Can investors use this indicator to implement a successful market timing strategy?

EFF/KRF: This proposition has been tested in several papers, and the answer is no. The market-to-book ratio for the market (a proxy for q) shows some ability to predict stock returns during the 1930s, but not thereafter.

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