The Impact of Serious Safety Incidents on Airline Stocks

Jeffery A. Born


The impact of commercial airplane crashes on the shareholder wealth of US-listed airline stocks has been the focus of many prior studies, but none have explored the concomitant impact on trading volume. We expand the scope of prior studies to include near crashes. We examine 262 ‘incidents’ from 1962 to 2018 (220 with return evidence) and document a significant (negative) wealth impact for crashes with fatalities and casualties, and an insignificant impact for incidents with no casualties. We find that log-transformed trading volume spikes upward in the three-day crash-period window and that trading volume remains abnormally high in the three plus weeks that follow the crash when casualties occur. We interpret the high level of post-event trading to be consistent with a noise trader hypothesis: naïve trading hoping to take advantage of airline stock over-reaction – which we do not detect.

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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

This journal is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

International Journal of Financial Research
ISSN 1923-4023(Print)ISSN 1923-4031(Online)


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