Corporate Equality and Equity Prices: Doing Well While Doing Good?
AbstractTwo competing hypotheses, value enhancing and value discounting, state that implementing socially responsible corporate policies can have positive or negative effects on firm value. This paper tests how a specific type of social responsibility–corporate equality–affects firm value. Corporate equality is measured by the corporate equality index (CEI). This index quantifies how companies treat their gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender employees, consumers, and investors. Using a sample of CEI-rated, publicly traded firms in the U.S., we find that, between 2002 and 2006, firms with a higher degree of corporate equality have higher stock returns and higher market valuation (Q). We provide suggestive, causal evidence that corporate equality enhances firm value through better performance in product markets and labor markets: Firms with a higher degree of corporate equality also tend to have larger sales, higher profit margins, higher employee productivity, and attract more employees. These results are robust to the inclusion of unobserved firm-heterogeneities. Overall, our results support the value-enhancing effects of corporate social responsibility.
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by Economics and Econometrics Research Institute (EERI), Brussels in its series EERI Research Paper Series with number EERI_RP_2009_09.
Length: 29 pages
Date of creation: 08 Sep 2009
Date of revision:
Corporate equality; social responsibility; socially responsible investment; stock returns; performance.;
Other versions of this item:
- Fu, Shihe & Shan, Liwei, 2009. "Corporate equality and equity prices: Doing well while doing good?," MPRA Paper 14235, University Library of Munich, Germany.
- G11 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Portfolio Choice; Investment Decisions
- G12 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Asset Pricing; Trading Volume; Bond Interest Rates
- J70 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Labor Discrimination - - - General
- M14 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting - - Business Administration - - - Corporate Culture; Diversity; Social Responsibility
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2009-08-30 (All new papers)
- NEP-BEC-2009-08-30 (Business Economics)
- NEP-CFN-2009-08-30 (Corporate Finance)
- NEP-SBM-2009-08-30 (Small Business Management)
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- 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.
- Hong, Harrison & Kacperczyk, Marcin, 2009. "The price of sin: The effects of social norms on markets," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 93(1), pages 15-36, July.
- Alexander Kempf & Peer Osthoff, 2007. "The Effect of Socially Responsible Investing on Portfolio Performance," European Financial Management, European Financial Management Association, vol. 13(5), pages 908-922.
- William Kerr & Shihe Fu, 2008. "The survey of industrial R&D—patent database link project," The Journal of Technology Transfer, Springer, vol. 33(2), pages 173-186, April.
- Fama, Eugene F & French, Kenneth R, 1992. " The Cross-Section of Expected Stock Returns," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 47(2), pages 427-65, June.
- M. V. Lee Badgett, 1995. "The wage effects of sexual orientation discrimination," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 48(4), pages 726-739, July.
- John M. Blandford, 2003. "The nexus of sexual orientation and gender in the determination of earnings," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 56(4), pages 622-642, July.
- Renneboog, Luc & Ter Horst, Jenke & Zhang, Chendi, 2008. "The price of ethics and stakeholder governance: The performance of socially responsible mutual funds," Journal of Corporate Finance, Elsevier, vol. 14(3), pages 302-322, June.
- Carhart, Mark M, 1997. " On Persistence in Mutual Fund Performance," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 52(1), pages 57-82, March.
- Catherine J. Morrison-Paul & Donald S. Siegel, 2006.
"Corporate Social Responsibility and Economic Performance,"
Rensselaer Working Papers in Economics
0605, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Department of Economics.
- Catherine M. Paul & Donald Siegel, 2006. "Corporate social responsibility and economic performance," Journal of Productivity Analysis, Springer, vol. 26(3), pages 207-211, December.
- 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.
- Kewei Hou & David T. Robinson, 2006. "Industry Concentration and Average Stock Returns," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 61(4), pages 1927-1956, 08.
- Geoffrey Heal, 2005. "Corporate Social Responsibility: An Economic and Financial Framework," The Geneva Papers on Risk and Insurance - Issues and Practice, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 30(3), pages 387-409, July.
- Fama, Eugene F & MacBeth, James D, 1973. "Risk, Return, and Equilibrium: Empirical Tests," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 81(3), pages 607-36, May-June.
- Fama, Eugene F. & French, Kenneth R., 1997. "Industry costs of equity," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 43(2), pages 153-193, February.
- Dan Black & Gary Gates & Seth Sanders & Lowell Taylor, 2000.
"Demographics of the gay and lesbian population in the United States: Evidence from available systematic data sources,"
Springer, vol. 37(2), pages 139-154, May.
- Dan Black & Gary Gates & Seth Sanders & Lowell Taylor, 1999. "Demographics of the Gay and Lesbian Population in the United States: Evidence from Available Systematic Data Sources," Center for Policy Research Working Papers 12, Center for Policy Research, Maxwell School, Syracuse University.
- Zakri Y. Bello, 2005. "Socially Responsible Investing And Portfolio Diversification," Journal of Financial Research, Southern Finance Association & Southwestern Finance Association, vol. 28(1), pages 41-57.
- Jensen, Michael C, 1986. "Agency Costs of Free Cash Flow, Corporate Finance, and Takeovers," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 76(2), pages 323-29, May.
- Bauer, Rob & Koedijk, Kees & Otten, Roger, 2005. "International evidence on ethical mutual fund performance and investment style," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 29(7), pages 1751-1767, July.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Julia van Hove).
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.