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Exploitable Predictable Irrationality: The FIFA World Cup Effect on the U.S. Stock Market

  • Guy Kaplanski (a1) and Haim Levy (a2)

In a recently published paper, Edmans, García, and Norli (2007) reveal a strong association between results of soccer games and local stock returns. Inspired by their work, we propose a novel approach to exploit this effect on the aggregate international level with the following three unique features: i) The aggregate effect does not depend on the games’ results; hence, the effect is an exploitable predictable effect. ii) The aggregate effect is based on many games; hence, it is very large and highly significant. We find that the average return on the U.S. market over the World Cup’s effect period is – 2.58%, compared to +1.21% for all-days average returns over the same period length. iii) Exploiting the aggregate effect is involved with trading in a single index for a relatively long period.

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Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis
  • ISSN: 0022-1090
  • EISSN: 1756-6916
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