The Journal of Finance

The Journal of Finance publishes leading research across all the major fields of finance. It is one of the most widely cited journals in academic finance, and in all of economics. Each of the six issues per year reaches over 8,000 academics, finance professionals, libraries, and government and financial institutions around the world. The journal is the official publication of The American Finance Association, the premier academic organization devoted to the study and promotion of knowledge about financial economics.

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Where Is the Risk in Value? Evidence from a Market‐to‐Book Decomposition

Published: 08/09/2019   |   DOI: 10.1111/jofi.12836


We study the value premium using the multiples‐based market‐to‐book decomposition of Rhodes‐Kropf, Robinson, and Viswanathan (2005). The market‐to‐value component drives all of the value strategy return, while the value‐to‐book component exhibits no return predictability in either portfolio sorts or firm‐level regressions. Existing results linking market‐to‐book to operating leverage, duration, exposure to investment‐specific technology shocks, and analysts’ risk ratings derive from the unpriced value‐to‐book component. In contrast, results on expectation errors, limits to arbitrage, and certain types of cash flow risk and consumption risk exposure are due to the market‐to‐value component. Overall, our evidence casts doubt on several value premium theories.