The Halloween indicator, “Sell in May and Go Away”: Everywhere and all the time

Cherry Y. Zhang, Ben Jacobsen

Research output: Journal PublicationArticlepeer-review

15 Citations (Scopus)


To answer the sceptics, we use all historical data (62962 observations) on all stock market indices worldwide to verify the robustness of the so-called Halloween Indicator or Sell in May effect. The effect seems remarkably robust with returns on average 4% higher during November-April period than during May-October. A new test for the effect offers some additional insights. Worldwide excess returns during summer seem negative (around −1%) and often significantly so suggesting a flat or negative risk return relation. Only for Mauritius do we find a significantly positive risk return relation during May-October. Our dataset also allows for a new (upper bound) estimate for the equity premium of around 4%.

Original languageEnglish
Article number102268
JournalJournal of International Money and Finance
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2021


  • Halloween indicator
  • Long time series data
  • Seasonal anomalies
  • Sell in May

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Finance
  • Economics and Econometrics


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