Now showing 1 - 10 of 11
  • Publication
    Measuring the effectiveness of Australia's Statutory-backed continuous disclosure policy on 'innovative' investment disclosures
    (Centre for International Finance and Regulation, 2015-01) ;
    We examine the impact of the introduction in 1994 (and subsequent amendments) of the statutory-backed continuous disclosure policy (SBCDP) in Australia. Our analysis measures impact by focusing on the investment disclosure propensity, and investment announcement abnormal returns of more innovative investments, defined as disclosures of R&D and IT expenditures. We also examine CAPEX investment disclosures as a benchmark in which to compare R&D and IT disclosures. Using regression models to control for typical characteristics (i.e., firm, industry, macroeconomic and time) that are correlated with investment likelihood, we find that post SBCDP adoption in 1994, firms were less likely to disclose any investment type. We do, however, find a significant increase in disclosure likelihood after the adoption in 2003 of stronger non-disclosure legislation, and tougher penalties. Nevertheless, compared to CAPEX disclosures, firms are still less likely to disclose R&D investments, even after the adoption of tougher penalties in 2003. We interpret this finding as evidence of firms unwilling to forego competitive advantages, which likely arise with R&D investments. We also find some evidence of increased announcement returns post SBCDP adoption, but only for CAPEX investments. The abnormal returns to R&D investments appear to be uncorrelated with changes in regulation, and remain fairly constant over the sample period.
  • Publication
    Firm size, takeover profitability, and the effectiveness of the market for corporate control: Does the absence of anti-takeover provisions make a difference?
    The market for corporate control is generally regarded as an important disciplinary mechanism in well developed economies. Entrenchment mechanisms commonly used by US firms in the form of anti-takeover provisions (ATPs) may offer some protection from disciplinary action, facilitating entrenchment and value-reducing behavior. One manifestation of entrenchment is poor acquisitions, with the literature reporting significant losses to large acquirers, and to acquirers with a higher number of ATPs. We examine the profitability of acquisitions in Australia, a market where US-style ATPs are prohibited. The results show that unlike their US counterparts, large Australian acquirers earn significant value for their shareholders, both in terms of announcement returns and long-run operating performance improvements. Takeover premiums are also substantially lower than those reported for the US and UK, and do not differ between large and small acquirers. Premiums are also positively correlated with long-run operating performance, indicating that they reflect real synergies, as opposed to hubris or overpayment. We also find that bidders who destroy value in takeovers are likely to be subsequently acquired. However, unlike US evidence, larger acquirers are just as likely to be targeted for takeover as smaller acquirers, indicating that size is not an effective impediment to the disciplining function of the market for corporate control in Australia. The findings are robust to several econometric issues common to the type of models used in our analysis.
      1495Scopus© Citations 66
  • Publication
    The sources of value destruction in acquisitions by entrenched managers
    Prior work has established that entrenched managers make value-decreasing acquisitions. In this study, we determine how they destroy that value. Overall, we find that value destruction by entrenched managers comes from a combination of factors. First, they disproportionately avoid private targets, which have been shown to be generally associated with value creation. Second, when they do buy private targets or public targets with blockholders, they tend not to use all-equity offers, which has the effect of avoiding the transfer of a valuable blockholder to the bidder. We further test whether entrenched managers simply overpay for good targets or choose targets with lower synergies. We find that while they overpay, they also choose low synergy targets in the first place, as shown by combined announcement returns and post-merger operating performance.
      2242Scopus© Citations 214
  • Publication
    A Comparison of Error Rates for EVA, Residual Income, GAAP-earnings, and Other Metrics Using a Long-window Valuation Approach
    (Taylor and Francis, 2008) ;
    Predictability and variability are two measures commonly used in the empirical literature to gauge the quality of earnings and hence, decision usefulness to investors. We adopt both measures to investigate empirically the relative quality of Stern Stewart's measure of economic value added (EVA) compared to GAAP (generally accepted accounting principles) earnings, residual income, cash flows and other mandated metrics in the USA and UK. We proxy for accounting quality by applying a long-window methodology to obtain hindsight valuation errors based on the difference between ex ante market value and discounted ex post metrics. Decision usefulness, in terms of ease of forecasting, is proxied by differences in valuation errors between the benchmark and alternative accounting methods. Contrary to the Biddle et al. (Journal of Accounting and Economics, 24, pp. 301–336, 1997) finding that mandated earnings were superior to EVA and residual income, we find that EVA and other residual income metrics consistently give rise to lower average valuation errors and thus have higher predictability across a variety of windows and terminal dates. Further, on the basis of our second measure of accounting quality, the variability of valuation errors, EVA performs best in the USA and third in the UK. The results strongly indicate that differences between residual income constructs, including EVA, are generally small but that earnings quality will be improved by recognition of a cost of equity capital in measuring reported income.
    Scopus© Citations 6  629
  • Publication
    Excess cash holdings and shareholder value
    (Wiley, 2011-06) ;
    We examine the determinants of corporate cash holdings in Australia and the impact on shareholder wealth of holding excess cash. Our results show that a trade-off model best explains the level of a firm’s cash holdings in Australia. We find that 'transitory' excess cash firms earn significantly higher risk-adjusted returns compared to 'persistent' excess cash firms, suggesting that the market penalises firms that hoard cash. The marginal value of cash also declines with larger cash balances, and the longer firms hold on to excess cash. The results are consistent with agency costs associated with persistence in excess cash holdings.
      1474Scopus© Citations 56
  • Publication
    The market response to information quality shocks: the case of Enron
    (Taylor and Francis, 2008-07-07) ; ; ;
    Relying on the market to provide incentives that would bring about optimal information quality is potentially a cost effective alternative to regulatory oversight. However, this depends on the ability of the market to recognize and price this attribute. In this article, we gain insights into the disciplinary role of the market by examining its response to Enron-related accounting scandals. We report evidence that information quality was in decline, leading upto the Enron-related scandals, but that the market was not sensitive to this decline. We confirm, however, that there was an abrupt decline in perceived information quality post-Enron. Furthermore, using an ex-ante methodology we provide strong evidence that auditor reputations were differentially affected by the scandals. We also find evidence that the Enron-related scandals adversely affected the market risk premium implying that information quality is part of systematic risk. Our results indicate that the market was operating effectively in recognizing lower quality information through an auditor reputation effect prior to the Sarbanes-Oxley Act. This calls into question the need for regulation to address the perceived deficit in information quality.
      407Scopus© Citations 3
  • Publication
    Firm size, sovereign governance, and value creation: Evidence from the acquirer size effect
    This paper examines the relationship between acquirer size, sovereign governance, and value-creation in acquisitions. Prior literature indicates that larger acquirers' acquisitions create less shareholder wealth in developed markets, arising primarily from agency and entrenchment problems. However, in weak governance environments, size might have off-setting benefits, including increased market power and political connections. We use a sample of 17,647 takeovers from 45 countries to examine the acquirer size effect around the world. We find that the acquirer size effect exists internationally, but is smaller in magnitude in weak governance markets. Compared with larger acquirers in strong governance countries, large acquirers in weak governance countries do takeovers that generate higher stock-returns and increase post-takeover operating performance. Their deals are also more likely to be friendly, and take less time to complete. We also find that the benefits of larger acquirer size increase with the importance of political connections in the acquirer's country. The results suggest that country-governance can moderate the impact of corporate characteristics, such as corporate size.
      654Scopus© Citations 23
  • Publication
    Method of payment and risk mitigation in cross-border mergers and acquisitions
    We argue that the method of payment in cross-border mergers and acquisitions (M&As) can mitigate country-level governance risk for the acquirer. We find a greater use of stock as the method of payment in cross-border deals involving targets from countries with high governance risk relative to that in the acquirer’s country. This increased use of stock in riskier cross-border deals is consistent with the optimal reaction of the acquirer to avoid overpayment, even though we also show that the use of stock (instead of cash) as the method of payment in cross-border deals is associated with a lower likelihood of deal completion. Furthermore, for more recent periods (i.e., after 2000) we show that the use of stock (cash) has increased (decreased) significantly in cross-border deals, resulting in convergence with the method of payment used in domestic deals.
      1473Scopus© Citations 48
  • Publication
    Are Corporate Restructuring Events Driven by Common Factors? Implications for Takeover Prediction
    The paper shows that variables commonly used in takeover prediction models also help to explain the likelihood of several other restructuring events, including divestitures,bankruptcies and significant employee lay offs. This finding helps to explain the larger misclassification errors in binomial takeover prediction models commonly used in prior research.The results show that modelling takeover prediction models in a binomial setting is likely to lead to misspecification in the parameter estimates and, further, result in erroneous conclusions about the determinants of takeover likelihood. The paper shows that controlling for other restructuring events by using a multinomial framework results in consistently lower misclassification errors in out-of-sample prediction tests, when compared to the benchmark of a typical binomial model.
      758Scopus© Citations 39
  • Publication
    Ownership structure, managerial turnover and takeovers: Further UK evidence on the market for corporate control
    (Global Business Publications, 1998-03) ;
    This article investigates the impact that successful hostile and friendly takeovers have on the rates of top management change for U.K. target firms. The results shows that hostile takeovers are associated with a greater degree of both top executive and top team forced departure rates compared to that of friendly takeovers. Furthermore, prior to takeover, hostile targets have lower abnormal returns, lower profitability, higher debt, lower managerial ownership and a high ownership stake held by external block holders relative to friendly targets. The results give further support to the disciplining role of the hostile takeover.