This paper aims to compare the effect of ownership on firm performances in the 1997 and 2008 financial crises. More specifically, it investigates the effect of cash flow rights, control rights and cash flow rights leverage on firm performance. Two conditions motivated the study. First, the 2008 financial crisis happened quickly, so it was endogenous for firms. This setting is ideal to deal with endogeneity problems in a study that involves ownership and performance. Second, during the 2000s, awareness and implementation of corporate governance increased significantly. The authors believe that the markets learn these changes and incorporate them into prices, as suggested by an efficient market hypothesis.
The paper investigates and compares the effect of ownership structure on firm performance in the 2008 subprime crisis period to that in the 1997 financial crisis. Both crises happen unexpectedly, so the authors can expect that the crises are exogenous to firms. The authors use cash flow rights, control rights and cash flow right leverage for the ownership structure dimension. They also study time-series data to investigate the effect of ownership on a firm’s value.
The study finds that cash flow right and cash flow right leverage did not affect stock performance during the subprime crisis of 2008. It also finds that cash flow right leverage and cash flow right affected stock performance during the financial crisis of 1997. The study attributes this finding to the learning process and improvement of corporate governance during the period of the 2000s. Using time-series data, it finds that cash flow rights positively affect firm performance, suggesting an alignment effect. Ownership concentration improves firm performance. When the study split its sample, it found that the effect ownership on firms’ value is stronger for large firms.
The study’s main limitation is that it does not test directly the learning process hypothesis. The study contributes to the current literature by presenting more recent evidence on the effect of ownership structure on firm performance in a developing country. The authors argue that markets learn the improvement of corporate governance and incorporate this development into prices. Extending this research to other markets will provide confirmation whether the learning process is an international phenomenon.
The awareness and implementation of corporate governance should be maintained at least at this level. The positive relationship between ownership concentration and firm performance suggests that concentrated ownership performs monitoring more effectively. Investors should pay attention to ownership concentration.
The finding that prices already reflect corporate governance may suggest that market is monitoring this issue. This seems to be a good finding. Markets can be expected to discipline companies in the implementation of corporate governance. The awareness and implementation of corporate governance should be maintained at least at the current level.
The study contributes to the current literature by presenting additional evidence on the effect of ownership (using cash flow rights, control rights and cash flow right leverage) on firms’ performance in a more recent period and in a developing country. This period is characterized by a significant increase in awareness and the implementation of good corporate governance.
Hanafi, M., Setiyono, B. and Sanjaya, I. (2018), "Ownership structure and firm performance: evidence from the subprime crisis period", Corporate Governance, Vol. 18 No. 2, pp. 206-219. https://doi.org/10.1108/CG-10-2016-0203Download as .RIS
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