The system of formal and informal rules by which a company is governed. Corporate governance shapes more than just a given’s company value – it dictates who controls the capital in the economy and so how this capital is being put the use. Corporate governance therefore affects and is affected by the degree of cronyism and rent-seeking in society.
How can investors use capital markets to encourage emissions reductions? In new research, Matthew E. Kahn, John G. Matsusaka, and Chong Shu examine whether public pension funds are more effective in mitigating pollution when they divest from fossil fuel companies or actively engage their management.
Business and economic thought instituted at least since the Reagan revolution in the United States have promoted firms’ narrowly self-interested, profit-maximizing conduct even at the expense of consumers and workers. This paradigm leads to social distrust and insufficient cooperation. Steven C. Salop explains this distortion and proposes 10 guidelines by which firms can self-moderate their behavior to produce prosocial outcomes.
In new research, Matthias Breuer, Anthony Le, and Felix Vetter find that when companies are required by the government to seek a third-party financial audit, they turn to lower quality auditors. As a result, the accounting industry grows, but touted benefits for markets and corporate stakeholders appear elusive.
Many financial commentators thought that the surge of retail investors participating in the stock market, the most notable of whom boosted “meme stocks” like GameStop, would democratize corporate governance and improve prosocial firm behavior, including the promotion of environmental, social, and governance (ESG) goals. In new research, Dhruv Aggarwal, Albert H. Choi, and Yoon-Ho Alex Lee find evidence that the exact opposite took place.
New research by Vesa Pursiainen, Hanwen Sun and Yue Xiang finds that competition hurts corporate incentives to fulfill environmental, social, and governance (ESG) goals. Firms facing more competitive pressure have worse ESG scores, in particular when the firms have short-term-oriented shareholders. However, firms located in areas that are more concerned about climate change appear more willing to sacrifice profits for better ESG performance.
In new research, Michal Barzuza, Quinn Curtis, and David Webber create a framework explaining why CEOs have powerful incentives to promote ESG, why these incentives are distinct from those of shareholders, why they are powerful despite the lack of governance mechanisms, and why they are at times excessive or skewed.
In a new paper, Bing Guo, Dennis C. Hutschenreiter, David Pérez-Castrillo, and Anna Toldrà-Simats study how large institutional investors impact firm innovation. The authors find that large institutional investors encourage internal research and development but discourage firm acquisitions that would add patents and knowledge to their firms’ portfolios, hampering overall innovation.
The Stigler Center for the Study of the Economy and the State hosted with the Rustandy Center for Social Sector Innovation, in partnership with the Financial Times, a virtual event discussing whether corporate ESG policies puts politics before shareholder and stakeholders' best interests or looks out for their long term best interests, with Marianne Bertrand, Jay Clayton and Damien Dwin. The following is a transcript of the event.
The Stigler Center for the Study of the Economy and the State hosted with the Rustandy Center for Social Sector Innovation, in partnership with the Financial Times, a virtual event discussing shareholder democracy with Lisa Fairfax, Alex Thaler and Luigi Zingales. The following is a transcript of the event.
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