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Corporate Takeovers and Economic Efficiency


  • B. Espen Eckbo

    (Tuck School of Business, Dartmouth College, Hanover, New Hampshire 03755)


I review recent takeover research that advances our understanding of “who buys who” in the drive for productive efficiency. This research provides detailed information on text-based definitions of product market links between bidders and targets, the role of the supply chain and industrial networks in driving takeovers, target plant efficiency, and pre- and post-takeover investment in product innovation. Moreover, recent evidence adds to our understanding of “how firms are sold” (transaction efficiency). Almost half of takeovers involving public targets are initiated by the seller and not by the buyer. Targets are strongly averse to bidder toeholds, and the merger negotiation process strongly protects proprietary information. Takeover premiums leave traces of rational bidding strategies, including bid preemption and winner’s curse avoidance. Recent tests employing exogenous instrumentation of bidder valuations reject that bidder shares are systematically overpriced in all-stock bids and suggest that bidder synergy gains are much larger than previously thought.

Suggested Citation

  • B. Espen Eckbo, 2014. "Corporate Takeovers and Economic Efficiency," Annual Review of Financial Economics, Annual Reviews, vol. 6(1), pages 51-74, December.
  • Handle: RePEc:anr:refeco:v:6:y:2014:p:51-74

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    Cited by:

    1. Jinhwan Kim & Rodrigo S. Verdi & Benjamin P. Yost, 2020. "Do Firms Strategically Internalize Disclosure Spillovers? Evidence from Cash‐Financed M&As," Journal of Accounting Research, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 58(5), pages 1249-1297, December.
    2. Nishihara, Michi & Shibata, Takashi, 2019. "Liquidation, fire sales, and acquirers’ private information," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 108(C).
    3. Reddy, Kotapati Srinivasa, 2015. "Extant Reviews on Entry-mode/Internationalization, Mergers & Acquisitions, and Diversification: Understanding Theories and Establishing Interdisciplinary Research," MPRA Paper 63744, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised 2015.
    4. Ichiro Iwasaki & Evzen Kocenda & Yoshisada Shida, 2020. "Distressed Acquisitions Evidence from European Emerging Markets," KIER Working Papers 1031, Kyoto University, Institute of Economic Research.
    5. Pietro Bonetti & Miguel Duro & Gaizka Ormazabal, 2020. "Disclosure Regulation and Corporate Acquisitions," Journal of Accounting Research, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 58(1), pages 55-103, March.
    6. Eckbo, B. Espen & Makaew, Tanakorn & Thorburn, Karin S., 2018. "Are stock-financed takeovers opportunistic?," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 128(3), pages 443-465.
    7. Ioannis Anagnostopoulos & Anas Rizeq, 2021. "Conventional and neural network target‐matching methods dynamics: The information technology mergers and acquisitions market in the USA," Intelligent Systems in Accounting, Finance and Management, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 28(2), pages 97-118, April.
    8. Meier, Jean-Marie A. & Servaes, Henri, 2014. "Distressed Acquisitions," CEPR Discussion Papers 10093, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    9. Ye Cai & Xuan Tian & Han Xia, 2016. "Location, Proximity, and M&A Transactions," Journal of Economics & Management Strategy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 25(3), pages 688-719, September.
    10. Dimopoulos, Theodosios & Sacchetto, Stefano, 2017. "Merger activity in industry equilibrium," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 126(1), pages 200-226.
    11. Bonetti, Pietro & Duro, Miguel & Ormazabal, Gaizka, 2019. "Disclosure Regulation and Corporate Acquisitions," CEPR Discussion Papers 13458, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    12. Aktas, Nihat & Xu, Guosong & Yurtoglu, Burcin, 2018. "She is mine: Determinants and value effects of early announcements in takeovers," Journal of Corporate Finance, Elsevier, vol. 50(C), pages 180-202.
    13. Bernard, Darren & Blackburne, Terrence & Thornock, Jacob, 2020. "Information flows among rivals and corporate investment," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 136(3), pages 760-779.

    More about this item


    takeover; supply chain; innovation; bidding; deal terms; takeover gains;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • G34 - Financial Economics - - Corporate Finance and Governance - - - Mergers; Acquisitions; Restructuring; Corporate Governance


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