We use earnings forecasts from a cross-sectional model to proxy for cash flow expectations and estimate the implied cost of capital (ICC) for a large sample of firms over 1968-2008. The earnings forecasts generated by the cross-sectional model are superior to analysts' forecasts in terms of coverage, forecast bias, and earnings response coefficient. Moreover, the model-based ICC is a more reliable proxy for expected returns than the ICC based on analysts' forecasts. We present evidence on the cross-sectional relation between firm-level characteristics and ex ante expected returns using the model-based ICC.

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doi.org/10.1016/j.jacceco.2011.12.001, hdl.handle.net/1765/32160
ERIM Top-Core Articles
Journal of Accounting and Economics
Erasmus Research Institute of Management

Hou, K., van Dijk, M., & Zhang, Y. (2012). The implied cost of capital: A new approach. Journal of Accounting and Economics, 53(3), 504–526. doi:10.1016/j.jacceco.2011.12.001