Graduation Year

2018

Date of Submission

12-2017

Document Type

Campus Only Senior Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts

Department

Economics

Reader 1

Eric Hughson

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© 2017 Lauren M. Rosenberger

Abstract

I aim to explain significantly different industry abnormal returns and changes in risk as a result of the 1933 Bank Holiday imposed by President D. Franklin Roosevelt from March 3, 1933 to March 15, 1933. I identify no strong relationship between unregulated industry leverage and abnormal returns following the Bank Holiday, but find regulated industries, the most highly levered at the time, experienced the most statistically significant negative abnormal returns. I find a strong correlation between abnormal returns and leverage when including regulated and unregulated industries. Thus, the evidence is consistent with the story that highly regulated industries who experienced negative abnormal returns were not able to take advantage of the benefits brought on by the Bank Holiday. The addition of historically accurate leverage data fails to fully account for a lack of significant results from Ingram (2016), who analyzed industry specific returns and risk surrounding the Bank Holiday and attempted to explain industry differences by including measures of industry leverage by using a proxy for leverage. I find that industries related to manufacturing experience positive abnormal returns following the Bank Holiday, most likely due to the ability to borrow money and finance capital, brought on by newly established financial stability.

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