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Shareholder rights and the market reaction to Sarbanes-Oxley

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  • Choi, Seung Hee
  • Frye, Melissa B.
  • Yang, Minhua
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    Abstract

    The Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002 (SOX) was aimed at enhancing corporate governance, financial reporting, and audit functions. This study compares the market reaction of firms with weak and strong protection of shareholder rights to the passage of SOX. We find that firms with weak shareholder rights experienced positive abnormal returns when SOX was passed. This is consistent with the market perceiving that such firms would benefit from the governance reforms. In contrast, firms with strong shareholder rights did not experience a significant positive market reaction. We also find a significant increase in risk for firms with weak shareholder rights following the passage of SOX. In addition, we find that strong shareholder rights firms decreased shareholder protection after SOX, while weak shareholder rights firms did not change significantly from their pre-SOX protection levels. We find no evidence of abnormal long-run performance for firms that altered their shareholder protection following SOX.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by Elsevier in its journal The Quarterly Review of Economics and Finance.

    Volume (Year): 48 (2008)
    Issue (Month): 4 (November)
    Pages: 756-771

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    Handle: RePEc:eee:quaeco:v:48:y:2008:i:4:p:756-771

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    Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/inca/620167

    Related research

    Keywords: Sarbanes-Oxley Wealth effects Corporate governance Governance index;

    References

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    1. Paul A. Gompers & Joy L. Ishii & Andrew Metrick, 2002. "Corporate Governance and Equity Prices," Center for Financial Institutions Working Papers 02-32, Wharton School Center for Financial Institutions, University of Pennsylvania.
    2. Fama, Eugene F. & French, Kenneth R., 1993. "Common risk factors in the returns on stocks and bonds," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 33(1), pages 3-56, February.
    3. John J. Binder, 1985. "Measuring the Effects of Regulation with Stock Price Data," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 16(2), pages 167-183, Summer.
    4. Schwert, G William, 1981. "Using Financial Data to Measure Effects of Regulation," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 24(1), pages 121-58, April.
    5. Jensen, Michael C. & Meckling, William H., 1976. "Theory of the firm: Managerial behavior, agency costs and ownership structure," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 3(4), pages 305-360, October.
    6. Cornett, Marcia Millon & Rezaee, Zabihollah & Tehranian, Hassan, 1996. "An investigation of capital market reactions to pronouncements on fair value accounting," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 22(1-3), pages 119-154, October.
    7. Fama, Eugene F. & French, Kenneth R., 1997. "Industry costs of equity," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 43(2), pages 153-193, February.
    8. Berry, Tammy K. & Paige Fields, L. & Wilkins, Michael S., 2006. "The interaction among multiple governance mechanisms in young newly public firms," Journal of Corporate Finance, Elsevier, vol. 12(3), pages 449-466, June.
    9. Akhigbe, Aigbe & Martin, Anna D., 2006. "Valuation impact of Sarbanes-Oxley: Evidence from disclosure and governance within the financial services industry," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 30(3), pages 989-1006, March.
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    Cited by:
    1. Wang, Weishen & Graefe-Anderson, Rachel & Pyles, Mark K. & Kim, Dongnyoung, 2014. "How entrenched managers beat earnings expectations before and after SOX," The Quarterly Review of Economics and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 54(1), pages 82-91.
    2. Dah, Mustafa A. & Frye, Melissa B. & Hurst, Matthew, 2014. "Board changes and CEO turnover: The unanticipated effects of the Sarbanes–Oxley Act," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 41(C), pages 97-108.

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