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Innovation and Institutional Ownership

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  • Aghion, Philippe
  • Van Reenen, John
  • Zingales, Luigi

Abstract

We find that institutional ownership in publicly traded companies is associated with more innovation (measured by cite-weighted patents). To explore the mechanism through which this link arises, we build a model that nests the lazy-manager hypothesis with career-concerns, where institutional owners increase managerial incentives to innovate by reducing the career risk of risky projects. The data supports the career concerns model. First, whereas the lazy manager hypothesis predicts a substitution effect between institutional ownership and product market competition (and managerial entrenchment generally), the career-concern model allows for complementarity. Empirically, we reject substitution effects. Second, CEOs are less likely to be fired in the face of profit downturns when institutional ownership is higher. Finally, using instrumental variables, policy changes and disaggregating by type of owner we find that the effect of institutions on innovation does not appear to be due to endogenous selection.

Suggested Citation

  • Aghion, Philippe & Van Reenen, John & Zingales, Luigi, 2010. "Innovation and Institutional Ownership," Institutions and Markets Papers 93414, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei (FEEM).
  • Handle: RePEc:ags:feemim:93414
    DOI: 10.22004/ag.econ.93414
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Bronwyn Hall, 2004. "The financing of research and development," Chapters, in: Anthony Bartzokas & Sunil Mani (ed.), Financial Systems, Corporate Investment in Innovation, and Venture Capital, chapter 2, Edward Elgar Publishing.
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    3. Klaus M. Schmidt, 1997. "Managerial Incentives and Product Market Competition," The Review of Economic Studies, Review of Economic Studies Ltd, vol. 64(2), pages 191-213.
    4. Pruitt, Stephen W & Wei, K C John, 1989. "Institutional Ownership and Changes in the S&P 500," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 44(2), pages 509-513, June.
    5. Paul Gompers & Joy Ishii & Andrew Metrick, 2003. "Corporate Governance and Equity Prices," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, President and Fellows of Harvard College, vol. 118(1), pages 107-156.
    6. Renée B. Adams & Daniel Ferreira, 2007. "A Theory of Friendly Boards," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 62(1), pages 217-250, February.
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Financial Economics;

    JEL classification:

    • G20 - Financial Economics - - Financial Institutions and Services - - - General
    • G32 - Financial Economics - - Corporate Finance and Governance - - - Financing Policy; Financial Risk and Risk Management; Capital and Ownership Structure; Value of Firms; Goodwill
    • O31 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Innovation and Invention: Processes and Incentives
    • O32 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Management of Technological Innovation and R&D
    • O33 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Technological Change: Choices and Consequences; Diffusion Processes

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