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The Corporate Governance Role of the Media: Evidence from Russia

  • Alexander Dyck

    (University of Toronto)

  • Natalya Volchkova

    (New Economic School/CEFIR)

  • Luigi Zingales

    (Harvard University, NBER, and CEPR)

We study the effect of media coverage on corporate governance outcomes by focusing on Russia in the period 1999-2002. Russia provides a setting with multiple examples of corporate governance abuses, where traditional corporate governance mechanisms are ineffective, and where we can identify an exogenous source of news coverage arising from the presence of an investment fund, the Hermitage fund, that tried to shame companies by exposing their abuses in the international media. We find that the probability that a corporate governance abuse is reversed is affected by the coverage of the news in the Anglo-American press. The result is not due to the endogeneity of news reporting since this result holds even when we instrument media coverage with the presence of the Hermitage fund among its shareholders and the “natural” newsworthiness of the company involved. We confirm this evidence with a case study.

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Paper provided by Center for Economic and Financial Research (CEFIR) in its series Working Papers with number w0054.

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Length: 51 pages
Date of creation: Oct 2004
Date of revision: Sep 2005
Handle: RePEc:cfr:cefirw:w0054
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  1. Besley, Timothy J. & Prat, Andrea, 2002. "Handcuffs for the Grabbing Hand? Media Capture and Government Accountability," CEPR Discussion Papers 3132, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  2. Alexander Dyck & Adair Morse & Luigi Zingales, 2007. "Who Blows the Whistle on Corporate Fraud?," NBER Working Papers 12882, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Matthew Gentzkow & Jesse M. Shapiro, 2006. "Media Bias and Reputation," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 114(2), pages 280-316, April.
  4. Armando Gomes, 2000. "Going Public without Governance: Managerial Reputation Effects," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 55(2), pages 615-646, 04.
  5. Dyck, Alexander & Zingales, Luigi, 2002. "Private Benefits of Control: An International Comparison," CEPR Discussion Papers 3177, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  6. Stefano DellaVigna & Ethan Kaplan, 2006. "The Fox News Effect: Media Bias and Voting," NBER Working Papers 12169, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Alexander Dyck & Luigi Zingales, 2002. "The Corporate Governance Role of the Media," NBER Working Papers 9309, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Fama, Eugene F & Jensen, Michael C, 1983. "Separation of Ownership and Control," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 26(2), pages 301-25, June.
  9. Diamond, Douglas W, 1989. "Reputation Acquisition in Debt Markets," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 97(4), pages 828-62, August.
  10. Diamond, Douglas W, 1991. "Monitoring and Reputation: The Choice between Bank Loans and Directly Placed Debt," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 99(4), pages 689-721, August.
  11. Gregory S. Miller, 2006. "The Press as a Watchdog for Accounting Fraud," Journal of Accounting Research, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 44(5), pages 1001-1033, December.
  12. Irina Slinko & Ekaterina Zhuravskaya & Evgeny Yakovlev, 2005. "Laws for Sale: Evidence from Russia," American Law and Economics Review, Oxford University Press, vol. 7(1), pages 284-318.
  13. Becker, Gary S & Murphy, Kevin M, 1993. "A Simple Theory of Advertising as a Good or Bad," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 108(4), pages 941-64, November.
  14. Fama, Eugene F, 1980. "Agency Problems and the Theory of the Firm," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 88(2), pages 288-307, April.
  15. Sergei Guriev & Andrei Rachinsky, 2005. "The Role of Oligarchs in Russian Capitalism," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 19(1), pages 131-150, Winter.
  16. Lisa George & Joel Waldfogel, 2003. "Who Affects Whom in Daily Newspaper Markets?," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 111(4), pages 765-784, August.
  17. Sendhil Mullainathan & Andrei Shleifer, 2005. "The Market for News," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 95(4), pages 1031-1053, September.
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