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Why Mergers Reduce Profits, and Raise Share-Prices

  • Fridolfsson, Sven-Olof
  • Stennek, Johan

We explain the empirical puzzle why mergers reduce profits, and raise share prices. If being an 'insider' is better than being an 'outsider', firms may merge to preempt their partner merging with a rival. The stock-value is increased, since the risk of becoming an outsider is eliminated. We also show that mergers increasing consumers' prices, while increasing competitors' profits, may reduce the competitors' share-prices. Thus, event-studies may not detect anti-competitive mergers. These results are derived in an endogenous-merger model, predicting the conditions under which mergers occur, the time of merger, and the split of surplus.

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Paper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 2357.

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Date of creation: Jan 2000
Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:2357
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  1. Stillman, Robert, 1983. "Examining antitrust policy towards horizontal mergers," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 11(1-4), pages 225-240, April.
  2. Houston, Joel F. & Ryngaert, Michael D., 1994. "The overall gains from large bank mergers," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 18(6), pages 1155-1176, December.
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  7. Ajeyo Banerjee & E. Woodrow Eckard, 1998. "Are Mega-Mergers Anticompetitive? Evidence from the First Great Merger Wave," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 29(4), pages 803-827, Winter.
  8. Fudenberg, Drew & Gilbert, Richard & Stiglitz, Joseph & Tirole, Jean, 1983. "Preemption, leapfrogging and competition in patent races," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 22(1), pages 3-31, June.
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  11. Levy, David T & Reitzes, James D, 1992. "Anticompetitive Effects of Mergers in Markets with Localized Competition," Journal of Law, Economics and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 8(2), pages 427-40, April.
  12. Perry, Martin K & Porter, Robert H, 1985. "Oligopoly and the Incentive for Horizontal Merger," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 75(1), pages 219-227, March.
  13. Bradley, Michael & Desai, Anand & Kim, E. Han, 1988. "Synergistic gains from corporate acquisitions and their division between the stockholders of target and acquiring firms," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 21(1), pages 3-40, May.
  14. Berkovitch, Elazar & Narayanan, M. P., 1993. "Motives for Takeovers: An Empirical Investigation," Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis, Cambridge University Press, vol. 28(03), pages 347-362, September.
  15. James D. Reitzes & David T. Levy, 1995. "Price Discrimination and Mergers," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 28(2), pages 427-436, May.
  16. Raymond Deneckere & Carl Davidson, 1985. "Incentives to Form Coalitions with Bertrand Competition," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 16(4), pages 473-486, Winter.
  17. Gautam Gowrisankaran, 1999. "A Dynamic Model of Endogenous Horizonal Mergers," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 30(1), pages 56-83, Spring.
  18. Jensen, Michael C. & Ruback, Richard S., 1983. "The market for corporate control : The scientific evidence," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 11(1-4), pages 5-50, April.
  19. Salop, Steven C & Scheffman, David T, 1983. "Raising Rivals' Costs," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 73(2), pages 267-271, May.
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  21. Healy, Paul M. & Palepu, Krishna G. & Ruback, Richard S., 1992. "Does corporate performance improve after mergers?," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 31(2), pages 135-175, April.
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