ABSTRACT: We document systematic evidence of risk effects of disclosures culled from a virtually exhaustive set of sources from the print medium. We content analyze more than 100,000 disclosure reports by management, analysts, and news reporters (i.e., business press) in constructing firm‐specific disclosure measures that are quantitative and amenable to replication. We expect credibility and timeliness differences in the disclosures by source, which would translate into differential cost of capital effects. We find that when content analysis indicates favorable disclosures, the firm's risk, as proxied by the cost of capital, stock return volatility, and analyst forecast dispersion, declines significantly. In contrast, unfavorable disclosures are accompanied by significant increases in risk measures. Analysis of disclosures by source—corporations, analysts, and the business press—reveals that negative disclosures from business press sources result in increased cost of capital and return volatility, and favorable reports from business press reduce the cost of capital and return volatility.

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