stock market graph on a phone

New study shows congressional stock purchases may impact stock market reactions

A recent study co-authored by Dinesh Hasija, PhD, assistant professor of management in the Hull College of Business at Augusta University, suggests stock market investments by congressional representatives can influence the market’s volatility.

The study, published in Strategic Management Journal and authored by Mirzokhidjon Abdurakhmonov, Roary E. Snider, Jason W. Ridge and Hasija, argues that investors perceive members of Congress as possessing insider governmental information and power over the regulatory landscape of a firm. Thus, the market reacts positively when the stock trades of those in Congress are made public. The argument is supported with a sample of Senate stock purchased between 2012 and 2020.

Man smiling
Dinesh Hasija, PhD

Researchers say whether politicians actually trade on insider information or their ability to influence government policy is less relevant than investors’ perceptions that this is the case.

The study also finds the reaction of the stock market is higher when members of Congress who buy the stock have direct jurisdiction over the firm through committee assignment. They also found an increase in abnormal returns if the firm is tied to members of the U.S. Senate through lobbying-sponsored legislation and political action committee contributions.

However, contrary to investors’ perception, researchers find that stocks sold and purchased by senators experienced negative abnormal returns over the six- to 12-month period following the transaction date. 

The study suggests limiting lawmakers’ stock holdings to blind trusts or ETFs that follow stock market indexes and asset classes, which are broader economic indicators of a healthy economy that will align their personal interests with national interests.

Like Love Haha Wow Sad Angry
Avatar photo
Written by
Kevin Faigle

Kevin Faigle is Media Relations Specialist at Augusta University. Contact him to schedule an interview on this topic or with one of our experts at

View all articles
Avatar photo Written by Kevin Faigle

Jagwire is your source for news and stories from Augusta University. Daily updates highlight the many ways students, faculty, staff, researchers and clinicians "bring their A games" in classrooms and clinics on four campuses in Augusta and locations across the state of Georgia.

graphic that says download jag mobile with icon buttons below that say download on app store and download on google play with a picture of a phone