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Corporate governance and the returns to acquiring firms' shareholders: an international comparison

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  • Dennis C. Mueller

    (University of Vienna, Vienna, Austria)

  • B. Burcin Yurtoglu

    (University of Vienna, Vienna, Austria)

Abstract

We examine the effects of mergers on the returns to acquiring companies' shareholders for a large sample of companies from both Anglo-Saxon and non-Anglo-Saxon countries over the 1980s and 1990s. With the important exception of Japan, we find similar patterns of returns across both types of countries. For a sample of 9733 acquiring companies the mean percentage gain over a short window of 21 days is 0.6%. This picture changes dramatically as the market has more time to evaluate the mergers and|or the acquiring firms. After three years, acquirers' shareholders in the United States and continental Europe lost on average 19% of their market value compared to a portfolio of non-merging firms in their size deciles and their two-digit industry, in Canada, Australia and New Zealand roughly 16%, and in the four Scandinavian countries almost 15%. Further analysis indicates that some mergers are consistent with the hypothesis that mergers generate synergies, but that a majority of mergers in Continental Europe are explained by the managerial discretion and|or hubris hypothesis. Our findings also suggest that corporate governance institutions in the United States and the other Anglo-Saxon countries lead to better investment performance than in continental Europe, when one confines one's attention to mergers. Copyright © 2007 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Suggested Citation

  • Dennis C. Mueller & B. Burcin Yurtoglu, 2007. "Corporate governance and the returns to acquiring firms' shareholders: an international comparison," Managerial and Decision Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 28(8), pages 879-896.
  • Handle: RePEc:wly:mgtdec:v:28:y:2007:i:8:p:879-896
    DOI: 10.1002/mde.1365
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Randall Morck & Bernard Yeung, 2010. "Agency Problems and the Fate of Capitalism," NBER Working Papers 16490, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Gugler, Klaus & Mueller, Dennis C. & Weichselbaumer, Michael, 2012. "The determinants of merger waves: An international perspective," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 30(1), pages 1-15.
    3. Bhagat, Sanjai & Malhotra, Shavin & Zhu, PengCheng, 2011. "Emerging country cross-border acquisitions: Characteristics, acquirer returns and cross-sectional determinants," Emerging Markets Review, Elsevier, vol. 12(3), pages 250-271, September.
    4. Duso, Tomaso & Gugler, Klaus & Yurtoglu, Burcin, 2010. "Is the event study methodology useful for merger analysis? A comparison of stock market and accounting data," International Review of Law and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 30(2), pages 186-192, June.
    5. Frijns, Bart & Gilbert, Aaron & Lehnert, Thorsten & Tourani-Rad, Alireza, 2013. "Uncertainty avoidance, risk tolerance and corporate takeover decisions," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 37(7), pages 2457-2471.

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