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The Effect of Takeover Activity on Corporate Research and Development

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  • Bronwyn H. Hall

Abstract

It is widely thought that increases in corporate mergers and acquisitions of the sort which the United States has experienced in the recent past lead to a reduction in such long term investment activities as R&D because of a shortened horizon on the part of managers. This paper uses a newly created dataset containing all acquisitions of publicly traded firms in the manufacturing sector in the last ten years to answer some basic questions which pertain to this issue. I find that the firms involved in acquisitions and mergers where both partners are in the manufacturing sector have roughly the same pattern of R&D spending as the sector as a whole and that the acquisition itself does not cause a reduction in R&D activity on the part of these firms. Moreover, the R&D capital thus acquired is valued more highly by the acquiring firm than by the stock market. On the other hand, I also find that the substantial increase in the number and size of acquisitions made by privately held firms in the eighties is concentrated primarily on firms with low R&D intensity which also are in non-R&D intensive industries. Because the pattern of low investment in R&D is longstanding, and because the firms taken over have less rather than more R&D capital than the industry as a whole, it seems unlikely that the recent increase in takeover activity has had a significantly negative effect on R&D spending in these industries.

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Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 2191.

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Date of creation: Mar 1987
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Publication status: published as Hall, Bronwyn H. "The Effect of Takeover Activity on Corporate Research and Development," Corporate Takeovers: Causes and Consequences, ed. Alan J. Auerbach, Chicago: UCP, 1988.
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:2191

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  1. Zvi Griliches, 1998. "Comparing Productivity Growth: An Exploration of French and U.S. Industrial and Firm Data," NBER Chapters, in: R&D and Productivity: The Econometric Evidence, pages 157-186 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Bronwyn H. Hall & Clint Cumminq & Elizabeth S. Laderman & Joy Mundy, 1988. "The R&D Master File Documentation," NBER Technical Working Papers 0072, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Robert E. Lucas & Jr., 1967. "Adjustment Costs and the Theory of Supply," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 75, pages 321.
  4. Alan J. Auerbach & David Reishus, 1988. "The Effects of Taxation on the Merger Decision," NBER Chapters, in: Corporate Takeovers: Causes and Consequences, pages 157-190 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Grossman, Sanford J & Stiglitz, Joseph E, 1977. "On Value Maximization and Alternative Objectives of the Firm," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 32(2), pages 389-402, May.
  6. Hall, Bronwyn H, 1987. "The Relationship between Firm Size and Firm Growth in the U.S. Manufacturing Sector," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 35(4), pages 583-606, June.
  7. Andrew B. Abel, 1984. "R&D and the Market Value of the Firm: A Note," NBER Chapters, in: R & D, Patents, and Productivity, pages 261-270 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Abel, Andrew B, 1985. "A Stochastic Model of Investment, Marginal q and the Market Value of the Firm," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 26(2), pages 305-22, June.
  9. Zvi Griliches, 1998. "Productivity and R&D at the Firm Level," NBER Chapters, in: R&D and Productivity: The Econometric Evidence, pages 100-133 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Hayashi, Fumio, 1982. "Tobin's Marginal q and Average q: A Neoclassical Interpretation," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 50(1), pages 213-24, January.
  11. Cosslett, Stephen R, 1981. "Maximum Likelihood Estimator for Choice-Based Samples," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 49(5), pages 1289-1316, September.
  12. Roll, Richard, 1986. "The Hubris Hypothesis of Corporate Takeovers," The Journal of Business, University of Chicago Press, vol. 59(2), pages 197-216, April.
  13. Ruud, Paul A., 1984. "Tests of Specification in Econometrics," Department of Economics, Working Paper Series qt4kq8m0hf, Department of Economics, Institute for Business and Economic Research, UC Berkeley.
  14. Annette B. Poulsen & Gregg A. Jarrell, 1986. "Motivations For Hostile Tender Offers And The Market For Political Exchange," Contemporary Economic Policy, Western Economic Association International, vol. 4(3), pages 30-45, 07.
  15. Abel, Andrew B, 1983. "Optimal Investment under Uncertainty," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 73(1), pages 228-33, March.
  16. Berkovec, James & Rust, John, 1985. "A nested logit model of automobile holdings for one vehicle households," Transportation Research Part B: Methodological, Elsevier, vol. 19(4), pages 275-285, August.
  17. Mark Schankerman & M. Ishaq Nadiri, 1984. "Investment in R&D, Costs of Adjustment, and Expectations," NBER Chapters, in: R & D, Patents, and Productivity, pages 315-338 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  18. Daniel McFadden, 1977. "Modelling the Choice of Residential Location," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 477, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
  19. Lucas, Robert E, Jr & Prescott, Edward C, 1971. "Investment Under Uncertainty," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 39(5), pages 659-81, September.
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