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Conflicts of interest on corporate boards: The effect of creditor-directors on acquisitions

  • Jens Hilscher


    (International Business School, Brandeis University)

  • Elif Sisli-Ciamarra


    (International Business School, Brandeis University)

This paper investigates the effects on acquisitions of creditor-director presence on corporate boards. Using a hand-collected dataset for boards of large U.S. corporations, we find that companies with creditor-directors are more likely to engage in acquisitions with attributes that are unfavorable to shareholders and favorable to creditors (more diversifying and fewer cash-financed acquisitions). Consistent with these patterns, acquisition announcements are associated with lower shareholder value, higher creditor value, and lower overall firm value when a creditor is present. These results support the hypothesis that conflicts of interest between shareholders and creditors result in value-destroying acquisitions. In addition, commercial bankers with no lending relationship are not affected by conflicts of interest. Where appropriate, our estimation strategy takes into account that there may be self selection of bankers onto corporate boards.

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Paper provided by Brandeis University, Department of Economics and International Businesss School in its series Working Papers with number 34.

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Length: 38 pages
Date of creation: Aug 2011
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:brd:wpaper:34
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