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The Influence of Pension Funds on Corporate Governance

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    Although pension funds have gained importance in the last two decades, their role has not been described in detail by economic models. This paper focusses on the scope of these institutional investors when they are not satisfied with a management team of a company in which the pension fund holds a block of shares. Stock holdings by pension funds are largely dispersed. Therefore, any intervention by pension funds in corporate governance requires the formation of a coalition of pension funds. The realization of a coordinated intervention, in turn, is subject to the problems related to the provision of public goods, such as free-riding. We find that stock dispersion among pension funds, the amount of noise traders, coordination costs and the attractiveness of the exit option are relevant factors for successful interventions. The overall probability for a successful intervention, however, is quite low.

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    Paper provided by CER-ETH - Center of Economic Research (CER-ETH) at ETH Zurich in its series CER-ETH Economics working paper series with number 07/63.

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    Length: 26 pages
    Date of creation: Jan 2007
    Date of revision:
    Handle: RePEc:eth:wpswif:07-63
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    1. Shleifer, Andrei & Vishny, Robert W, 1986. "Large Shareholders and Corporate Control," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 94(3), pages 461-88, June.
    2. Mark Bagnoli, Barton L. Lipman, 1988. "Successful Takeovers without Exclusion," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 1(1), pages 89-110.
    3. Dixit, Avinash & Olson, Mancur, 2000. "Does voluntary participation undermine the Coase Theorem?," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 76(3), pages 309-335, June.
    4. Prevost, Andrew K & Rao, Ramesh P, 2000. "Of What Value Are Shareholder Proposals Sponsored by Public Pension Funds?," The Journal of Business, University of Chicago Press, vol. 73(2), pages 177-204, April.
    5. Palfrey, Thomas R. & Rosenthal, Howard, 1984. "Participation and the provision of discrete public goods: a strategic analysis," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 24(2), pages 171-193, July.
    6. Guercio, Diane Del & Hawkins, Jennifer, 1999. "The motivation and impact of pension fund activism," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 52(3), pages 293-340, June.
    7. George J. Stigler, 1971. "The Theory of Economic Regulation," Bell Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 2(1), pages 3-21, Spring.
    8. Jensen, Michael C, 1988. "Takeovers: Their Causes and Consequences," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 2(1), pages 21-48, Winter.
    9. Faccio, Mara & Lasfer, M. Ameziane, 2000. "Do occupational pension funds monitor companies in which they hold large stakes?," Journal of Corporate Finance, Elsevier, vol. 6(1), pages 71-110, March.
    10. Crespi, R. & Renneboog, L.D.R., 2000. "United we stand : Corporate Monitoring by Shareholder Coalitions in the UK," Discussion Paper 2000-18, Tilburg University, Center for Economic Research.
    11. Jensen, Michael C, 1986. "Agency Costs of Free Cash Flow, Corporate Finance, and Takeovers," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 76(2), pages 323-29, May.
    12. Bhide, Amar, 1993. "The hidden costs of stock market liquidity," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 34(1), pages 31-51, August.
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