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Investment, Financing Constraints, and Internal Capital Markets: Evidence from the Advertising Expenditures of Multinational Firms


  • C. Edward Fee
  • Charles J. Hadlock
  • Joshua R. Pierce


We find a significant positive relation between a firm's advertising spending in the United States and its contemporaneous foreign cash flow. This relation holds even after controlling for factors that should be related to the optimal level of domestic advertising, and it is stronger for subsets of firms that we expect to be relatively more financially constrained. Our evidence supports the hypothesis that there is a causal and economically substantial link between cash flow and investment spending, even for intangible investments such as advertising. Our evidence also suggests that firms have active internal capital markets in which capital is moved across geographic regions. The Author 2008. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of The Society for Financial Studies. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email:, Oxford University Press.

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  • C. Edward Fee & Charles J. Hadlock & Joshua R. Pierce, 2009. "Investment, Financing Constraints, and Internal Capital Markets: Evidence from the Advertising Expenditures of Multinational Firms," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 22(6), pages 2361-2392, June.
  • Handle: RePEc:oup:rfinst:v:22:y:2009:i:6:p:2361-2392

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Andrés González & Timo Teräsvirta & Dick van Dijk & Yukai Yang, 1910. "Panel Smooth Transition Regression Models," CREATES Research Papers 2017-36, Department of Economics and Business Economics, Aarhus University.
    2. Ahmet Inci, 2011. "Capital Investment, Earnings, and Annual Stock Returns: Causality Relationships In China," Eurasian Economic Review, Springer;Eurasia Business and Economics Society, vol. 1(2), pages 95-125, December.
    3. Brown, James R. & Petersen, Bruce C., 2015. "Which investments do firms protect? Liquidity management and real adjustments when access to finance falls sharply," Journal of Financial Intermediation, Elsevier, vol. 24(4), pages 441-465.
    4. Sizhong Sun, 2014. "Foreign Entry and Firm Advertising Intensity: Evidence from China," Review of Industrial Organization, Springer;The Industrial Organization Society, vol. 45(1), pages 79-97, August.
    5. Ferrando, Annalisa & Marchica, Maria-Teresa & Mura, Roberto, 2014. "Financial flexibility across the euro area and the UK," Working Paper Series 1630, European Central Bank.
    6. Yung, Kenneth & Li, DeQing Diane & Jian, Yi, 2015. "The value of corporate financial flexibility in emerging countries," Journal of Multinational Financial Management, Elsevier, vol. 32, pages 25-41.
    7. Popov, Alexander, 2014. "Credit constraints and investment in human capital: Training evidence from transition economies," Journal of Financial Intermediation, Elsevier, vol. 23(1), pages 76-100.
    8. Itzkowitz, Jennifer, 2015. "Buyers as stakeholders: How relationships affect suppliers' financial constraints," Journal of Corporate Finance, Elsevier, vol. 31(C), pages 54-66.
    9. Annalisa Ferrando & Klaas Mulier, 2015. "Firms’ Financing Constraints: Do Perceptions Match the Actual Situation?," The Economic and Social Review, Economic and Social Studies, vol. 46(1), pages 87-117.
    10. Borisova, Ginka & Brown, James R., 2013. "R&D sensitivity to asset sale proceeds: New evidence on financing constraints and intangible investment," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 37(1), pages 159-173.
    11. Brown, James R. & Martinsson, Gustav & Petersen, Bruce C., 2012. "Do financing constraints matter for R&D?," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 56(8), pages 1512-1529.
    12. James R. Brown & Gustav Martinsson & Christian Thomann, 2015. "What if Firms Could Borrow More? Evidence from a Natural Experiment," CESifo Working Paper Series 5458, CESifo Group Munich.
    13. Duchin, Ran & Ozbas, Oguzhan & Sensoy, Berk A., 2010. "Costly external finance, corporate investment, and the subprime mortgage credit crisis," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 97(3), pages 418-435, September.
    14. Chongyang Chen & Zhonglan Dai & Douglas Shackelford & Harold Zhang, 2011. "Does Financial Constraint Affect Shareholder Taxes and the Cost of Equity Capital?," NBER Working Papers 17169, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    15. Popov, Alexander & Rocholl, Jörg, 2015. "Financing constraints, employment, and labor compensation: evidence from the subprime mortgage crisis," Working Paper Series 1821, European Central Bank.
    16. Ding, Shujun & Jia, Chunxin & Wu, Zhenyu & Yuan, Wenlong, 2017. "Limited attention by lenders and small business debt financing: Advertising as attention grabber," International Review of Financial Analysis, Elsevier, vol. 49(C), pages 69-82.
    17. Fee, C. Edward & Hadlock, Charles J. & Pierce, Joshua R., 2012. "What happens in acquisitions?," Journal of Corporate Finance, Elsevier, vol. 18(3), pages 584-597.
    18. Laurence Booth & Christos Ntantamis & Jun Zhou, 2015. "Financial Constraints, R&D Investment, and the Value of Cash Holdings," Quarterly Journal of Finance (QJF), World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd., vol. 5(04), pages 1-24, December.
    19. Brown, James R. & Petersen, Bruce C., 2011. "Cash holdings and R&D smoothing," Journal of Corporate Finance, Elsevier, vol. 17(3), pages 694-709, June.

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