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Egalitarianism and international investment

Author

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  • Siegel, Jordan I.
  • Licht, Amir N.
  • Schwartz, Shalom H.

Abstract

This study identifies how country differences on a key cultural dimension—egalitarianism—influence international investment flows. A society's cultural orientation toward egalitarianism is manifested by intolerance for abuses of market and political power and a desire for protecting less powerful actors. We show egalitarianism to be based on exogenous factors including social fractionalization, dominant religion circa 1900, and war experience from the 19th century. We find a robust influence of egalitarianism distance on cross-national flows of bond and equity issuances, syndicated loans, and mergers and acquisitions. An informal cultural institution largely determined a century or more ago, egalitarianism exercises its effect on international investment via an associated set of consistent contemporary policy choices. But even after controlling for these associated policy choices, egalitarianism continues to exercise a direct effect on cross-border investment flows, likely through its direct influence on managers' daily business conduct.

Suggested Citation

  • Siegel, Jordan I. & Licht, Amir N. & Schwartz, Shalom H., 2011. "Egalitarianism and international investment," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 102(3), pages 621-642.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:jfinec:v:102:y:2011:i:3:p:621-642
    DOI: 10.1016/j.jfineco.2011.05.010
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Culture; Informal institutions; Social institutions; Egalitarianism; Cultural distance; International investment; Cross-listing; Foreign direct investment; Mergers and acquisitions;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • F21 - International Economics - - International Factor Movements and International Business - - - International Investment; Long-Term Capital Movements
    • F23 - International Economics - - International Factor Movements and International Business - - - Multinational Firms; International Business
    • G32 - Financial Economics - - Corporate Finance and Governance - - - Financing Policy; Financial Risk and Risk Management; Capital and Ownership Structure; Value of Firms; Goodwill
    • G34 - Financial Economics - - Corporate Finance and Governance - - - Mergers; Acquisitions; Restructuring; Corporate Governance
    • K22 - Law and Economics - - Regulation and Business Law - - - Business and Securities Law
    • Z13 - Other Special Topics - - Cultural Economics - - - Economic Sociology; Economic Anthropology; Language; Social and Economic Stratification

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