Markets for Financial Information
Information production and access to information play a central role in our financial markets and arguably serves as the lifeblood of the capital markets due to its key role in the pricing of financial assets. Markets for financial information underlie many functions of financial institutions as well as a diverse range of regulatory issues. Much of our securities law focuses upon the timely disclosure of information that is viewed as valuation relevant, including earnings announcements and the trades of corporate insiders.1 Indeed, a range of types of analysts focus upon interpreting and evaluating regulatory-mandated disclosures that the market views as valuation relevant. Of course, the financial market crisis, itself, has shined additional attention on a number of aspects related to information in the marketplace, and especially upon the role of credit-rating agencies. More broadly, the price declines that developed during the crisis reflect information that had not been emphasized previously by market participants and consequently, strengthened the interest in markets for financial information and related institutions.