Cash Flow Based Bankruptcy Risk and Stock Returns in the US Computer and Electronics IndustryABSTRACTThis thesis investigates the anomalous underperformance of distressed stocks in the US computer and electronics industry. It shows that such anomaly can be explained by a parallel analysis of risk based rational pricing and profitability (earnings) levels to returns relationship propositions. For the 1990 to 2006 period, distressed stocks have on average underperformed their non-distressed counterparts. However, once the conditional relationship with profitability is taken into account, the distress risk is rewarded by a continuous positive return hence priced appropriately.In the computer and electronics industry growth stocks (low B/M) outperform on average value stocks (high B/M). The size factor has not been confirmed to be significant in explaining stock returns for this specific industry over the 1990 to 2006 period. The study also reveals that B/M and size factors do not proxy for distress risk. The B/M factor follows an inverted u-shape along the distress risk deciles axis. As result, stocks in low and high distress portfolios share similarly low B/M values. Cash flow based bankruptcy predictors estimated on a quarterly basis from a Cox proportional hazard model, that are used as proxy for a continuous distress risk factor in asset pricing tests, are able to predict bankruptcies at higher accuracy rates than the Z-Score as alternative measure.