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The value of connections in turbulent times: Evidence from the United States

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  • Acemoglu, Daron
  • Johnson, Simon
  • Kermani, Amir
  • Kwak, James
  • Mitton, Todd

Abstract

The announcement of Timothy Geithner as nominee for Treasury Secretary in November 2008 produced a cumulative abnormal return for financial firms with which he had a prior connection. This return was about 6% after the first full day of trading and about 12% after ten trading days. There were subsequently abnormal negative returns for connected firms when news broke that Geithner’s confirmation might be derailed by tax issues. Personal connections to top executive branch officials can matter greatly even in a country with strong overall institutions, at least during a time of acute financial crisis and heightened policy discretion.

Suggested Citation

  • Acemoglu, Daron & Johnson, Simon & Kermani, Amir & Kwak, James & Mitton, Todd, 2016. "The value of connections in turbulent times: Evidence from the United States," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 121(2), pages 368-391.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:jfinec:v:121:y:2016:i:2:p:368-391
    DOI: 10.1016/j.jfineco.2015.10.001
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Political connections; Economic crises; Institutions;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • G01 - Financial Economics - - General - - - Financial Crises
    • G14 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Information and Market Efficiency; Event Studies; Insider Trading
    • G21 - Financial Economics - - Financial Institutions and Services - - - Banks; Other Depository Institutions; Micro Finance Institutions; Mortgages
    • G28 - Financial Economics - - Financial Institutions and Services - - - Government Policy and Regulation

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