Now showing 1 - 9 of 9
- PublicationThe early managed fund industry : investment trusts in 19th century Britain(University College Dublin. School of Business. Centre for Financial Markets, 2003-09)The early years of the 21st century have been a difficult and challenging time for the managed funds industry. The neglected history of managed funds reveals prior episodes of sustained growth, questionable practices, upheaval and inevitably, regulation. The first fully diversified managed fund appeared in Britain in 1868, and the industry remained largely a British preserve until the rise of the investment company and the mutual fund in the United States during the 1920s. This paper documents the features of the early trusts, discusses the rise of the industry and the challenges it survived in the early years, and draws parallels with facets of the finance industry of today.
- PublicationThe performance and diversification benefits of funds of hedge fundsWe examine the performance and diversification potential of 332 funds of hedge funds (FOHFs) for the period from January 1990 to May 2003. Consistent with prior studies, we find that FOHFs appear to underperform the hedge fund index on a risk-adjusted basis. However, FOHFs have characteristics that offset their apparent underperformance. Their returns do not suffer from negative skewness that is a feature of many hedge fund strategies. In addition, we find that FOHFs have lower correlations (than the hedge fund index) with stock indices in both bull and bear markets, making them a better diversification tool in equity portfolios. For bond portfolios, however, FOHFs have no diversification advantage over hedge fund indexing.
- PublicationAre fund of hedge fund returns asymmetric?We examine the return distributions of 332 funds of hedge funds and associated indices. Over half of the sample is significantly skewed according to the skewness statistic, and these are split 50/50 positive and negative. However, we argue that the skewness statistic can lead to erroneous inferences regarding the nature of the return distribution, because the test statistic is based on the normal distribution. Using a series of tests that make minimal assumptions about the shape of the underlying distribution, we find very little skewness in the returns of funds of funds, and when we do find evidence of asymmetry it is close to the mean rather than in the tails.
- PublicationWhat factors determine the use of venture capital? Evidence from the Irish software sectorWe address the venture capital financing issue from the firm’s perspective. Using survey data for 110 new technology-based firms (NTBFs) in the Irish software sector, we assess the extent to which 5 human capital and 3 other variables determine the firm’s use of venture capital. Education of the lead founder to degree level is the only significant human capital variable, and it is directly related to the likelihood of being venture capital-backed. Venture capital-backed firms have significantly higher start-up costs, and their founders are less averse to loss of control than non-venture capital-backed firms. We conclude that the use of venture capital is dictated largely by the willingness of founders to relinquish control.
- PublicationCompetitiveness implications for Ireland of EU enlargementTen states, primarily from Central and Eastern Europe, are likely to be admitted to the EU within the next few years. The present paper assesses the competitiveness implications of this enlargement for Ireland. Four specific topics are considered: the trade effects, the implications for Ireland's ability to attract FDI, the likely levels of immigration from Central and Eastern Europe and its consequences, and the budgetary implications for the Irish Exchequer.
- PublicationIs there a high technology pecking order? An investigation of the capital structure of NTBFs in the Irish software sectorThis paper examines the financing of 117 privately held new technology-based firms (NTBFs) in the Irish software product sector. We advance the high-technology pecking order hypothesis (HTPOH) to explain the dominance of external equity over debt in NTBFs. Using founders’ opinions and perceptions on various financing issues, we find evidence consistent with four implications of the HTPOH. Sample firm founders perceive low tax benefits of debt, and very high levels of business risk as reflected in pessimism about their likelihood of survival even with adequate financing. In addition, founders perceive greater information asymmetries in debt than in private equity markets. This finding is consistent with the spirit of Myers’ (1984) and Myers and Majluf’s (1984) pecking order hypothesis in that firms prefer sources of finance associated with the least information asymmetry. A related finding is that founders believe issuing equity sends a positive signal to clients, suppliers and financiers.
- PublicationDo private equity buyouts represent value for target shareholders? Premiums in the boom of the early 2000sThis study compares the takeover premiums for 55 private equity buyouts with 59 takeovers involving a public acquirer, from the US takeover market between 2004 and 2007. This investigation takes place amidst accusations of anti-competitive behaviour against some of the most active private equity groups in the US. While controlling for several other factors that might affect the takeover premium, we find weak evidence that bid premiums are significantly lower for target firms undergoing a private equity takeover than those subject to takeovers by public companies. We also demonstrate that abnormal returns earned by targets around takeover announcements can be a biased and misleading proxy for takeover premium.
- PublicationTakeover bids, share prices, and the expected value hypothesisThis paper examines the relationship between the price bid for a takeover target, the probability of the bid succeeding and the target's price over the course of the bid. We test and reject Samuelson and Rosenthal's (1986) expected value hypothesis. We find that over the bid, the price of the target of a successful bid typically rises towards the bid price, but is not observed to converge with the bid price. This lack of observed convergenece appears to be due to an early cessation of trading in many of the bids that succeed. In the case of bids that fail, the target's share price is typically observed to rise above the bid price early in the bid. We consider several explanations for this, and suggest that the expectation of a subsequent bid is the most plausible explanation. This is supported by our empirical evidence. We also find that in the cases where the bids fail, early cessation of trading did not occur in the majority of cases.
- PublicationCapital structure in new technology-based firms : evidence from the Irish software sectorUsing a sample of 117 Irish software companies, we examine the capital structure of new technology-based firms. Consistent with the findings on financing for other small businesses, internal funds are the most important source of funding in new technology-based firms. However, in apparent contradiction to the pecking order hypothesis, the use of debt is rare and equity financing is the prime source of external finance. By questioning chief executive officers via survey on their perceptions and opinions on various financing issues, we are able to conclude that in many cases software firm founders prefer outside equity to debt. The dearth of debt in the capital structure of new technology-based firms cannot be wholly explained by financing constraints due to information asymmetries in the banking sector.