Zimbabwe Stock Exchange, firm size; portfolio, stock returns.
The objective of the study is to investigate the relationship between firm size and stock returns for firms listed on the Zimbabwe Stock Exchange (ZSE) between June 2009 and July 2013. We adopt the regression model employed by Banz in 1981, with innovations. The regression is based on constructed portfolios, with market capitalization as the basis for portfolio construction. The portfolios comprise at most 5 stocks, and stocks are sorted in ascending order by market capitalization for selection into portfolios. The sample period spans from June 2009 to July 2013. We select the sample period beginning from 2009 because that is when the government of Zimbabwe demonetized the Zimbabwean dollar and adopted a basket of foreign currencies as legal tender. The data prior to 2009 is also distorted by hyperinflation and therefore is not reliable. The sample size covers 64 companies listed on the ZSE, of which 60 are industrial and 4 are mining companies. We find that the estimated coefficient for the firm size factor is not significant at the 5% level of significance. Therefore, firm size has a positive yet insignificant effect on stock returns for companies listed on the ZSE for the period June 2009 to July 2013. Contrary to the general empirical findings, larger firms on the ZSE tend to exhibit higher risk-adjusted returns than smaller firms.
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