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Macroeconomic Variables and Equity Market Relationship


The equity market also known as stock market is the market for buyers and sellers to trade their equity instruments. There are a few types of equity securities, the most common form of equity securities are preferred stock and common stock. Equity market is important for a company because it allows a company to acquire funds without incurring debts. However, not all the companies are allowed to issue shares, only public listed company which is a limited liability company are allowed to issue share for the sale to the public. The buyers of the stock also became an ownership of a corporation and common stock holders have the right to vote on issues important to the corporation. Company pays their stock holders dividend annually base on the profit of the years. There are two main branches for investor to trade the corporate stock, which are organized exchange and over-the-counter (OTC). Organized exchange trading is governed by regulations and formal procedures to ensure the soundness of the market. However, stocks that traded through over-the-counter is more informal and uses electronic to trade. From the past, statistics has shown that stock prices can be determined by the economic factors.

Literature Review

The objective of the authors to carry out the research is to examine the relationship between macroeconomic variables with equity market. The research can helps stakeholder to understand more about equity market and the impact of macroeconomic variables toward equity market. Kim, McKenzie, and Faff (2003) had investigated the impact of scheduled announcements made by government for macroeconomic variables toward the risk and return of three major US financial markets which include equity market. Ioannidis and Kontonikas (2007) had investigates the impact of monetary policy on equity market performance in 13 OECD countries. Abugri (2006) had investigated the relationship between macroeconomic variables with equity market performance. Hooker (2004) had investigated the macroeconomic variables to predict the equity market performance using the Bayesian model developed in Cremers (2002). Patel (2012) had carry out the research in on Indian Stock Market for the effect of macroeconomic determinants on the performance of market. Trivedi and Behera (2012) and Prof. Sangmi and Hassan (2013) also had carry out research on Indian Stock Market for the relationship between equity prices and macroeconomic variables. Abdelbaki (2013) had used Autoregressive Distributed Lag Model to examine the relationship between macroeconomic variables and Bahraini equity market. Verma and Ozuna (2004) had carried out an empirical investigation for the outcome of Latin American stock markets influence by the macroeconomic variables. Maysami, Howe and Hamzah (2004) had examined the cointegration between macroeconomic variables and stock market’s sector indices rather than the composite index. Most of the journals had chosen interest rate and money supply as one of the macroeconomic variable which will affect the equity market. Nevertheless, foreign exchange rate, inflation rate, industrial production, gross domestic product, foreign direct investment, unemployment rate, gold price and stock market index also popular macroeconomic variables used to carry out the researches. Besides that, few authors also used some unpopular variables such as balance of trade, consumer price index, producer price index, volatility in foreign market and retail sales growth to do their researches. The following table shows the macroeconomic variables used by the authors to carry out their researches.

The reason that the authors conduct the research is to provide empirical evidence and also extend the research area that previous researchers voided. The reason that Kim, McKenzie and Faff (2004) do this research is because literature only investigate about the news announcement without investigate about the impact of important macroeconomic variables announcement and the actual news announcement that different from the participant’s expectation that reflect the stock price. Ioannidis, Kontonikas (2008) expand the literature of the significant of monetary policy and stock price by including dividend payment of stock return of 13 OECD countries. Abugri (2008) examine whether the macroeconomic indicator could significantly explain the stock market returns of Latin American. Verma and Ozuna (2005) investigate whether macroeconomic movement significantly impacts the equity market of other Latin American countries. Hooker (2004) extends the research by including macroeconomic variables to examine the expected emerging equity market return. Patel (2012), Trivedi and Behera (2012) investigate the existing literature by including eight more macroeconomic variables to test the effect of macroeconomics as determinant on the performance of the Indian stock market. Sangmi and Hassan (2013) examine the effects of macroeconomic variables on Indian stock market in the Arbitrage pricing theory (APT). Abdelbaki (2013) carry out the research to find the significant relationship between macroeconomic variables and Bahraini stock market development (BSMD). Maysami, Lee, and Hamzah (2004) extend the research between macroeconomics variable and stock market’s sector indices instead of the composite index and examine relationships between selected macroeconomic variables and the Singapore’s stock market index (STI), and Singapore Exchange Sector indices.

In order to determine the relationship of the macroeconomic variables and stock return, there was variety of test employed by different researchers for different purposes. First, Ioannidis and Kontonikas (2008) employed the Jarque-Bera test to test for the normality. They indicate that stock returns are non-normally distributed which leading the results of hypothesis testing invalid. By taking into account of the non-normality stock returns, bootstrap analysis was undertaken. The researchers also used the ordinary least squares method and the Newey-West heteroscedasticity consistent covariance matrix estimator method to examine the negative relationship between stock returns and interest rates. Moreover, Patel (2012), Trivedi and Behera (2012), and Maysami, Lee, and Hamzah (2004) found that the Johansen’s cointegration test (Johansen and Juselius, 1990) is more powerful in estimating the cointegrating vectors than Engle and Granger’s (1987). This is because cointegration can be tested in a full system of equations under one procedure, without requiring a specific variable to be normalized. This enables researchers to avoid carrying excessive errors from the first- into the second step. It also allows the avoidance of a priori of assumptions of endogenity or exogeniety. Moreover, the Johansen framework incorporates dynamic co-movements or simultaneous interactions, which enable researchers to study the channels through which of the macroeconomic variables affect the asset prices as well as their relative importance. Furthermore, Trivedi and Behera (2012), Patel (2012), and Verma and Ozuna (2005) identify that the Argumented Dickey-Fuller unit root test must carry out first to find the non-stationary of the variables before the Vector Error Correction which is used to investigate the long-run relationship and short-run dynamics among the variables. For the ADF test, reject the null hypothesis of non-stationarity for all the series. Then estimate the model in log first difference if the given log first difference of all series is stationary which help to ensures that the series of data do not consist of unit roots problem and this could avoids the spurious relationships. In addition, Trivedi and Behera (2012) and Abugri (2008) estimates impulse response functions (IRFs) which are derived from the Vector Autoregressive Model (VAR). This estimates is used to measures the time profile of the effect of a shock on the behavior and investigate the dynamic relationship of equity prices with macroeconomic variables. Lutkenpohl (1991) states that depending on the ordering of the variables in the VAR model, the results from impulse response functions may have big different which may subject to the “orthogonality assumption”. Hence, Koop, Pesaran, and Potter (1996), and Pesaran and Shin (1998) combat the problem by employed “generalized” impulse response functions which are invariant to any reordering of the variables in the VAR and also helps to any to ensure that the results are not subject to the orthogonality assumption. Last but not least, Hooker (2004) employed the Bayesian model selection approach. Due to the results could be sensitive to model specification problem, particularly when including additional variables in the regressions. Meanwhile, the theory provides little guidance as which macroeconomic variables should be included and excluded. This approach considers all achievable (linear) combinations of included explanatory variables, assigns them each flat priors of inclusion, and estimates their posterior probabilities.

The purpose of the researchers is to examine the significant or insignificant relationship between macroeconomics variables and equity market. Kim, McKenzie and Faff (2003) found a significant relationship between equity market and price information of customer and producer. This can be evidenced by government announcements relating unexpected balance of trade news, bond market and financial market volatility which have great impact and important to the internal economy and subsequently influence equity return. Ioannidis and Kontonikas (2007) identify that the relationship between interest rate of monetary policy and expected equity return is significant. This had proved that the central bank can changed the interest rate to influence assessment of stock market. Moreover, Abugri (2006) found that the global variables which include interest rate, exchange rate, industrial production and money supply in four Latin American countries are significantly influence stock market’s return. However, Hooker (2004) discovered that exchange rate do not provide significant results on equity market returns. Patel (2012) has identified commodity prices is one of the important variables that will significantly influence the stock market’s return. Hence, he suggested that the policymakers should try to maintain competitive price levels by implementing proper import duty and local taxes. Trivedi and Behera (2012) identify that there is a positive relationship between equity returns and macroeconomics variables which include index of industrial production, wholesale price index, foreihn institutional investment and capital international world index. Prof. Sangmi and Hassan (2013) have found that macroeconomics such as inflation, exchange rate, industrial production, money supply and interest rate, bring significant impact to the equity market where enhance in inflation would lead to higher stock price and tend to have higher rate of return. Abdelbaki (2013) found that the macroeconomics variables like income level, domestic investment, banking system development, private capital flows and stock market liquidity provide significant effects on a stock market functions, development and role in national economy. Verma and Ozuna (2004) found out that the use of cross-country Latin American macroeconomics variables is not significant in determining Latin American stock market movements. Maysami, Howe and Hamzah (2004) found out that the Singapore stock market formed significant relationship with all macroeconomic variables identified like money supply and interest rate, while the other Equity Index shows significant relationships on selected variables. Most of the journals are leading us to know that the macroeconomics variables and equity market have a significant relationship. Overall the researcher of Abugri (2006), Hooker (2004), Patel (2012), Trivedi and Behera (2012), Prof. Sangmi and Hassan (2013), Maysami, Howe and Hamzah (2004), found out that macroeconomics variable such as interest rate and exchange rate is mostly the key of affecting the equity market.

Recommendations & Conclusion

The results of the journals show us there is significant impact of macroeconomic variables toward the equity market. Hence, we recommend that there is a need for the government to initiate policies that will lower the interest rates as lower interest rate may boost up the equity market performance. There is a need for the government to control money supply since the results from the journals show that high money supply will lead to a better stock performance. Besides that, government also needs to control the exchange rate because there stock performance will go worse if the exchange rate is too high. Moreover, inflation rate may also a vital factor that will lower down the equity market performance if it is not control well. Hence, government is playing an important role and they should always analyze the equity market to boost up the country’s economy.

In conclusion, macroeconomic variables significantly influence the stock price due to the implementation of macroeconomic variables affects the economic performance and companies’ stock price will be dropping during economic recession. Hence, movement of stock price can be predicted through the announcement or implementation of macroeconomic variables by the government.

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