DP10261 Do Funds Make More When They Trade More?

Author(s): Lubo? Pástor, Robert F. Stambaugh, Lucian Taylor
Publication Date: November 2014
Keyword(s): active management, mutual funds, performance, skill, turnover
JEL(s): G10, G20
Programme Areas: Financial Economics
Link to this Page: cepr.org/active/publications/discussion_papers/dp.php?dpno=10261

We find that active mutual funds perform better after trading more. This time-series relation between a fund?s turnover and its subsequent benchmarkadjusted return is especially strong for small, high-fee funds. These results are consistent with high-fee funds having greater skill to identify time-varying profit opportunities and with small funds being more able to exploit those opportunities. In addition to this novel evidence of managerial skill and fund-level decreasing returns to scale, we find evidence of industry-level decreasing returns: The positive turnover-performance relation weakens when funds act more in concert. We also identify a common component of fund trading that is correlated with mispricing proxies and helps predict fund returns.