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第B0011版:国际新闻·双语
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2009年6月3日     收藏 打印 推荐 朗读 评论 更多功能 
One Key Number In Pricing A Deal: The 52-Week High
  With their spreadsheets and teams of math geeks, investment bankers like to show their deal work as a kind of deep science.

  Some new research from Harvard pulls back this veneer, showing just how powerful a role psychology plays in pricing deals. In particular, it is one number, the 52-week high for a company’s stock, that matters most.

  The 52-week high stock price has always had a fetishistic role in merger discussions. By custom, boards are insulted if a merger offer doesn’t breach this price level. Banker presentations focus on whether an offer is greater or lower than the 52-week high.

  Harvard Business School’s Malcolm Baker and two colleagues set out to quantify just how strong that pull really is. Sifting through a database of 7,500 deals from 1984 to 2007, they have begun to reveal how psychology drives pricing. It turned out that the data bunched noticeably around those 52-week highs, like a vine wrapped around a tree trunk.

  Consider these oddities. More deals priced at exactly the 52-week-high than at any other price. About three-fifths of deals fall above the 52-week marker. And each deal that is priced above the high has a 76% chance of shareholder approval, while deals falling below the high succeed 69% of the time.

  “Valuation is more like valuing a bottle of wine rather than computing the speed of light,” said Mr. Baker. “It doesn’t have a precise answer. And so that’s why arbitrary anchors can play an important role.”

  In other words, boards and bankers are just like the rest of us. They set aside their rational mind in favor of those anchors —— arbitrary and emotional points of concentration. It’s the same process that we use when ordering dinner at a restaurant: That $50 steak can influence how we perceive the $25 chicken.

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钱江晚报 国际新闻·双语 B0011 One Key Number In Pricing A Deal: The 52-Week High 2009-6-3 钱江晚报b00112009-06-0300019 2