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The Economics and Finance Letters

March 2016, Volume 3, 3, pp 39-56

Does the Holiday Effect Differ from Religious to Non-Religious Holidays? Empirical Evidence from Egypt

Zeina Al-Ahmad


Suzan Al-Ali

Zeina Al-Ahmad 1 ,

Suzan Al-Ali 1 
  1. Department of Banking and Financial Sciences, Faculty of Economics, Tishreen University, Lattakia, Syria 1

Pages: 39-56

DOI: 10.18488/journal.29/2016.3.3/

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Article History:

Received: 09 September, 2016
Revised: 20 October, 2016
Accepted: 23 October, 2016
Published: 07 November, 2016


This study aims to investigate the presence of holiday effect on the Egyptian Exchange (EGX) over the period 2010 to 2015. It utilizes daily data of the EGX30 index prices and trading volumes and applies dummy variables OLS regression. Three types of holidays are examined those being, secular, Islamic, and Christian, and those, in turn, are disaggregated into their individual components. The findings reveal that there are differences in the behavior of stock prices between holidays. While the secular and Islamic holidays are mainly associated with positive pre-holiday returns, the Christian holidays are associated with positive post-holiday returns. Disaggregating these holidays into their individual components reveals that the Police Day holiday, Eid Al-Fitr holiday and Eastern Christmas holiday are the major holidays driving the secular, Islamic and Christian holidays’ effect respectively. Interestingly, the results obtained when the trading volume is used do not support the presence of a holiday effect on trading volume. The findings could have important implications for developing profitable investment strategies in periods of holidays.
Contribution/ Originality
This study contributes to the literature in that it examines the holiday effect using disaggregated data of secular, Islamic, and Christian holidays with the aim of examining whether the holiday effect differs between religious and non-religious holidays and between Islamic and Christian ones.


Holiday effect, Secular holidays, Religious holidays, Islamic holidays, Christian holidays, Stock prices, Trading volume, Egyptian exchange (EGX).



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This study received no specific financial support.

Competing Interests:

The authors declare that they have no competing interests.


All authors contributed equally to the conception and design of the study.

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( 273 ) A Study on Financial Performance of Transport & Warehouses Firms Listed on the Hanoi Stock Exchange