The Relative Importance of Macro and Firm-Level Fundamentals to Nigerian Stocks’ Prices: Lessons for other Emerging Markets



The recapitalization policy of the Central Bank of Nigeria in 2005 increased transactions in the Nigerian stock market and also attracted the interest of many investors. As most capital markets are pro-cyclical, the Nigerian stock market was not different. The investors’ interests were not sustained over a long period of time due to a crash. Whenever there is a burst of the market bubble, it is always attributed to a deviation of the stock prices from the fundamentals of the firms that issue the stocks. Therefore, this study investigates the issue of movement in stock prices and the various changes that occurred in the characteristics of banks’ stocks prices between 2006 and 2010. This study adopts pooled least square regression method using a panel of 10 banks to find out the major determinants of stock prices in the Nigerian stock market with the view to establish if the burst was actually a function of deviation of the price from the fundamentals of the firms. One of the striking findings of this study is that prices of banks’ stocks have been mostly driven by the announcement and issuance of returns on investment at previous time periods – declared dividends. Both at individual bank level and the aggregate banks’ level, declared dividend proved to be the major driver of stock prices. This implies that the burst might not have been as a result of deviation of the prices from the fundamentals of the banks, rather by other forces outside the firm fundamentals.