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Article
Publication date: 12 September 2016

Andrews Owusu and Charlie Weir

The purpose of this paper is to investigate the impact corporate governance, measured by a governance index, on the performance of listed firms in a developing economy…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to investigate the impact corporate governance, measured by a governance index, on the performance of listed firms in a developing economy, Ghana. It also evaluates the effect of the introduction of a code of corporate governance on compliance rates across Ghanaian firms as well as assessing the impact of the code’s introduction on firm performance for the study period 2000-2009.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper develops a Ghanaian corporate governance index (GCGI) containing 33 provisions to measure corporate governance quality during the pre-code and the post-code sub-periods. The authors use a panel data analytical framework and fixed effects regressions to analyse the governance-performance relationships.

Findings

After controlling for endogeneity, the authors find a statistically significant and positive relationship between the GCGI and firm performance. The analysis shows evidence of a statistically significant increase in the degree of compliance with the Ghanaian Code from the pre-2003 sub-period to the post-2003 sub-period. The authors also find that the introduction of the code has led to improved firm performance. However, not all elements of corporate governance appear to have a significant effect on firm performance.

Research limitations/implications

One limitation of this study is the development of a corporate governance index. The binary coding used to construct the GCGI may not reflect the relative importance of the different corporate governance provisions. This means that all elements included in the index are given equal weighting. Future research may assign weights to each of the corporate governance provisions but this may have the disadvantage of making subjective judgements relative to the importance of each corporate governance provision recommended by the Ghanaian Code.

Practical implications

These results have important implications for both policy makers and companies. For policy makers, it is encouraging for the development of a code of corporate governance to regulate firms rather than enforcing rigid laws that may not be value relevant. For companies, the improvement in compliance with a code of corporate governance can provide a means of achieving improved performance.

Originality/value

This paper adds to the limited evidence on the governance-performance relationship in developing economies and in particular it analyses the role of a governance index. It is also the first paper to compare the pre- and the post-code governance index-performance relationship in an African or developing country.

Details

Journal of Applied Accounting Research, vol. 17 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0967-5426

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Article
Publication date: 6 April 2020

Alexios Makropoulos, Charlie Weir and Xin Zhang

This paper has two purposes. First, it evaluates the extent to which different failure processes are present in failed UK SMEs, by considering non-financial metrics…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper has two purposes. First, it evaluates the extent to which different failure processes are present in failed UK SMEs, by considering non-financial metrics including director characteristics, in addition to the financial ones. Second, it analyses the determinants of the transition to failure in relation to the different failure processes that have been identified.

Design/methodology/approach

The study is based on a sample of failed UK SMEs. The data covers financial ratios, board characteristics, the macroeconomic environment, sectoral details and regional information. First, failure processes are identified using a combination of factor analysis and cluster analysis. Second, the determinants of firms' transition to failure for the whole sample and in the individual failure clusters are analysed using panel data analysis.

Findings

Four different firm failure processes were identified. Director characteristics differ between firm failure processes. We find evidence that director characteristics including director age and board gender structure, affect the transition to failure of UK SMEs. We also find that different factors affect the different failure processes.

Originality/value

The paper is the first to analyse the reasons for failure of UK SMEs in the firm failure process context by considering non-financial metrics such as the characteristics of the firms' directors. In addition the paper also identifies a number of different determinants that affect the various failure processes. This finding is important because it suggests that policies designed to reduce the incidence of firm failure should take account of the different failure processes.

Details

Journal of Small Business and Enterprise Development, vol. 27 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1462-6004

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Article
Publication date: 1 April 2001

Charlie Weir and David Laing

A number of Committees have been set up in recent years to investigate the governance of UK quoted companies. The key one was the Cadbury Committee, which recommended a…

Abstract

A number of Committees have been set up in recent years to investigate the governance of UK quoted companies. The key one was the Cadbury Committee, which recommended a number of governance structures as examples of best practice. These included the separation of the posts of CEO and chairman, a significant representation of non‐executive directors, the importance of non‐executive director independence and the setting up of board subcommittees. This study finds that there has been widespread adoption of the recommended governance structures. However, there is no clear relationship between governance structures and corporate performance. This raises questions about the most effective type of governance mechanism and whether or not the prescriptive recommendations of Cadbury should be replaced with a more flexible approach.

Details

European Business Review, vol. 13 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0955-534X

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Article
Publication date: 14 November 2016

Tony Chieh-Tse Hou, Phillip McKnight and Charlie Weir

The purpose of this paper is to investigate the role of earnings forecast revisions by equity analysts in predicting Canadian stock returns

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to investigate the role of earnings forecast revisions by equity analysts in predicting Canadian stock returns

Design/methodology/approach

The sample covers 420 Canadian firms over the period 1998-2009. It analyses investors’ reactions to 27,271 upward revisions and 32,005 downward revisions of analysts’ forecasts for Canadian quoted companies. To test whether analysts’ earnings forecast revisions affect stock return continuation, forecast revision portfolios similar to Jegadeesh and Titman (2001) are constructed. The paper analyses the returns gained from a trading strategy based on buying the strong upward revisions portfolio and short selling the strong downward revisions portfolio. It also separates the sample into upward and downward revisions.

Findings

The authors find that new information in the form of analyst forecast revisions is not impounded efficiently into stock prices. Significant returns persist for a trading strategy that buys stocks with recent upward revisions and short sells stocks with recent downward revisions. Good news is impounded into stock prices more slowly than bad news. Post-earnings forecast revisions drift is negatively related to analyst coverage. The effect is strongest for stocks with greatest number of upward revisions. The introduction of the better disclosure standards has made the Canadian stock market more efficient.

Originality/value

The paper adds to the limited evidence on the effect of analyst forecast revisions on the returns of Canadian stocks. It sheds light on the importance of analysts’ earnings forecast information and offers support for the investor conservatism and information diffusion hypotheses. It also shows how policy can improve market efficiency.

Details

Managerial Finance, vol. 42 no. 11
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0307-4358

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Article
Publication date: 1 September 1998

Charlie Weir and David Laing

Management buy‐outs bring about a change in status of the management team from employee to owner. According to the “agency model”, this change in status provides the…

Abstract

Management buy‐outs bring about a change in status of the management team from employee to owner. According to the “agency model”, this change in status provides the financial incentives necessary to ensure that company performance will improve post‐MBO. The key financial incentive present is that the rewards of better performance now accrue to the management team rather than to the previous owners. The “agency model” argues that having a significant financial stake in a company will militate against discretionary behaviour by the new owners. A sample of small management buy‐outs was analysed in terms of two performance indicators, cash management and profitability. Performance was measured against three benchmarks: prior company performance, the performance of companies of similar size and the performance of the industry average. In general, there is no real evidence of better cash management but there is some evidence of improved profitability. The results therefore, offer limited support for the role of incentives proposed by the agency model.

Details

Journal of Small Business and Enterprise Development, vol. 5 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1462-6004

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Article
Publication date: 1 August 2003

Charlie Weir and David Laing

The vast majority of the acquisitions of UK‐quoted companies are friendly. This paper compares the accounting, financial and governance characteristics of firms that were…

Abstract

The vast majority of the acquisitions of UK‐quoted companies are friendly. This paper compares the accounting, financial and governance characteristics of firms that were acquired by friendly take‐over with those of firms that were not taken over. Evidence is found that targets exhibited superior performance in terms of the return on assets and the sales‐to‐assets ratio. However, they underperformed in terms of capital expenditure and the market‐to‐book ratio. No difference was found in the extent to which targets adopted the board structures recommended in the Code of Best Practice. The results therefore suggest that acquirers target firms that are relatively undervalued by the capital market but do not show signs of poor profitability or ineffective board structures.

Details

Management Decision, vol. 41 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0025-1747

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Article
Publication date: 1 June 2000

Sally Bowman, James Duncan and Charlie Weir

The increasing globalisation of markets has generated new debates about the decision‐making role of MNC subsidiaries. Globalisation may be expected to result in greater…

Abstract

The increasing globalisation of markets has generated new debates about the decision‐making role of MNC subsidiaries. Globalisation may be expected to result in greater centralisation of the decision‐making process. This study analyses the extent to which subsidiaries are being given control over a range of decisions. A sample of MNC subsidiaries operating in Scotland was sent questionnaires which dealt with financial, production, employment and research and development decision making. It was found that considerable authority was devolved to subsidiaries in terms of operational decisions. However, strategic decision making remained very much under the control of the parent. This indicates that the control systems being imposed on subsidiaries are selective and that the benefits created for local economies may be not be as great as it initially appears.

Details

European Business Review, vol. 12 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0955-534X

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Article
Publication date: 1 March 1999

David Laing and Charlie Weir

The issue of executive pay has been the subject of intense debate in recent years. Discusses the factors determining executive pay using 1995 and 1996 data for a sample of…

Abstract

The issue of executive pay has been the subject of intense debate in recent years. Discusses the factors determining executive pay using 1995 and 1996 data for a sample of 125 of the largest UK companies. Combines company performance and human capital characteristics as determinants of executive pay. Confirms the importance of company size as a strong influence on executive pay. Shows that profitability is a weak determinant of pay. Although human capital characteristics affect executive pay, the influence is not strong. When industry differences are taken into account, the impact of human capital diminishes further.

Details

Personnel Review, vol. 28 no. 1/2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0048-3486

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Article
Publication date: 1 April 1996

Charlie Weir

Analyses the link between management buyouts (MBOs) and the entrepreneurial process. Argues that, at least initially, a management‐based explanation of entrepreneurial…

Abstract

Analyses the link between management buyouts (MBOs) and the entrepreneurial process. Argues that, at least initially, a management‐based explanation of entrepreneurial activity is the most appropriate for MBOs. Assesses a number of performance variables to determine the impact of the MBOs. Finds that there is a general improvement in performance suggesting that MBOs provide management with entrepreneurial opportunities which had previously been unavailable to them. Concludes that there is evidence to support the MBO‐entrepreneur link and that MBOs do encourage entrepreneurial activity.

Details

Management Decision, vol. 34 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0025-1747

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Article
Publication date: 1 August 1995

Jo Evans and Charlie Weir

In large firms the managers who run the business tend not to belarge shareholders. In addition, managers are said to have objectiveswhich differ from those of the owners…

Abstract

In large firms the managers who run the business tend not to be large shareholders. In addition, managers are said to have objectives which differ from those of the owners. Aligning these conflicting interests is the basis of the agency problem. Various corporate governance schemes have been introduced to ensure that managers follow profit‐driven policies. Looks at the separation of decision management from decision control, the frequency of meetings between divisional managers and their superiors, performance‐related pay and performance‐related incentives. Examines their impact on firm profitability. Finds that the level of monitoring of divisional managers and the use of divisional performance‐related pay has a significant effect on performance. Finds incentives in general do not affect performance. Finds on average that performance is unaffected by the separation of decision processes, although it does help to achieve very good profitability.

Details

Management Decision, vol. 33 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0025-1747

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