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Institutional monitoring through shareholder litigation

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Author Info

  • Agnes Cheng, C.S.
  • He Huang, Henry
  • Li, Yinghua
  • Lobo, Gerald
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    Abstract

    This paper investigates the effectiveness of using securities class action lawsuits in monitoring defendant firms by institutional lead plaintiffs from two aspects: (1) immediate litigation outcomes, including the probability of surviving the motion to dismiss and the settlement amount, and (2) subsequent governance improvement such as changes in board independence. Using a large sample of securities lawsuits from 1996 to 2005, we show that institutional investors are more likely to serve as the lead plaintiff for lawsuits with certain characteristics. After controlling for these determinants of having an institutional lead plaintiff, we show that securities class actions with institutional owners as lead plaintiffs are less likely to be dismissed and have larger monetary settlements than securities class actions with individual lead plaintiffs. This effect exists for various types of institutions including public pension funds. We also find that, after the lawsuit filings, defendant firms with institutional lead plaintiffs experience greater improvement in their board independence than defendant firms with individual lead plaintiffs. Our study suggests that securities litigation is an effective disciplining tool for institutional owners.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Journal of Financial Economics.

    Volume (Year): 95 (2010)
    Issue (Month): 3 (March)
    Pages: 356-383

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    Handle: RePEc:eee:jfinec:v:95:y:2010:i:3:p:356-383

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    Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/inca/505576

    Related research

    Keywords: Corporate governance Institutional investors Monitoring Shareholder litigation;

    References

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    4. Trimbath, Susanne & Frydman, Halina & Frydman, Roman, 2001. " Cost Inefficiency, Size of Firms and Takeovers," Review of Quantitative Finance and Accounting, Springer, vol. 17(4), pages 397-420, December.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:
    1. Humphery-Jenner, M., 2011. "Internal and External Discipline Following Securities Class Actions," Discussion Paper 2011-044, Tilburg University, Center for Economic Research.
    2. Bajo, Emanuele & Barbi, Massimiliano & Bigelli, Marco & Hillier, David, 2013. "The role of institutional investors in public-to-private transactions," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 37(11), pages 4327-4336.
    3. Kim, Irene & Skinner, Douglas J., 2012. "Measuring securities litigation risk," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 53(1), pages 290-310.
    4. Hanley, Kathleen Weiss & Hoberg, Gerard, 2012. "Litigation risk, strategic disclosure and the underpricing of initial public offerings," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 103(2), pages 235-254.
    5. Brochet, Francois & Srinivasan, Suraj, 2014. "Accountability of independent directors: Evidence from firms subject to securities litigation," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 111(2), pages 430-449.
    6. Peng, Fei & Kang, Lili & Jiang, Jun, 2011. "Selection and institutional shareholder activism in Chinese acquisitions," MPRA Paper 38701, University Library of Munich, Germany.

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