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Corporate Governance and the Home Bias

  • Dahlquist, Magnus


    (Swedish Institute for Financial Research)

  • Pinkowitz, Lee

    (Georgetown University)

  • Stulz, René M.

    (Fisher College of Business)

  • Williamson, Rohan

    (Georgetown University)

This paper shows that there is a close relation between corporate governance and the portfolios held by investors. Most firms in countries with poor investor protection are controlled by large shareholders, so that only a fraction of the shares issued by firms in these countries can be freely traded and held by portfolio investors. We show that the prevalence of closely-held firms in most countries helps explain why these countries exhibit a home bias in share holdings and why U.S. investors underweight foreign countries in their portfolios. We construct an estimate of the world portfolio of shares available to investors who are not controlling shareholders (the world float portfolio). The world float portfolio differs sharply from the world market portfolio. In regression explaining the portfolio weights of U.S. investors, the world float portfolio has a positive significant coefficient but the world market portfolio has no additional explanatory power. This result holds when we control for country characteristics. An analysis of foreign investor holdings at the firm level for Sweden confirms the importance of the float portfolio as a determinant of these holdings.

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Paper provided by Institute for Financial Research in its series SIFR Research Report Series with number 11.

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Length: 44 pages
Date of creation: 15 Nov 2002
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:hhs:sifrwp:0011
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  1. Cronqvist, Henrik & Nilsson, Mattias, 2003. "Agency Costs of Controlling Minority Shareholders," Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis, Cambridge University Press, vol. 38(04), pages 695-719, December.
  2. Francis E. Warnock, 2001. "Home bias and high turnover reconsidered," International Finance Discussion Papers 702, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  3. Rafael La Porta & Florencio Lopez-de-Silanes & Andrei Shleifer, 1998. "Corporate Ownership Around the World," Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers 1840, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
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  5. Philippe Martin & H=E9l=E8ne Rey=, 2001. "Financial Super-Markets: Size Matters for Asset Trade," International Finance 0012001, EconWPA.
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  7. Ahearne, Alan G. & Griever, William L. & Warnock, Francis E., 2004. "Information costs and home bias: an analysis of US holdings of foreign equities," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 62(2), pages 313-336, March.
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  11. Jun-Koo Kang & Rene M. Stulz, 1995. "Why Is There a Home Bias? An Analysis of Foreign Portfolio Equity Ownership in Japan," NBER Working Papers 5166, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  12. Karolyi, G. Andrew & Stulz, Rene M., 2003. "Are financial assets priced locally or globally?," Handbook of the Economics of Finance, in: G.M. Constantinides & M. Harris & R. M. Stulz (ed.), Handbook of the Economics of Finance, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 16, pages 975-1020 Elsevier.
  13. La Porta, Rafael & Lopez-de-Silanes, Florencio & Shleifer, Andrei & Vishny, Robert, 2000. "Investor protection and corporate governance," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 58(1-2), pages 3-27.
  14. Hayne E. Leland and David H. Pyle., 1976. "Informational Asymmetries, Financial Structure, and Financial Intermediation," Research Program in Finance Working Papers 41, University of California at Berkeley.
  15. Roe, Mark J, 2002. "Corporate Law's Limits," The Journal of Legal Studies, University of Chicago Press, vol. 31(2), pages 233-71, June.
  16. Karen K. Lewis, 1999. "Trying to Explain Home Bias in Equities and Consumption," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 37(2), pages 571-608, June.
  17. Giannetti, Mariassunta & Simonov, Andrei, 2002. "Which Investors Fear Expropriation?," SIFR Research Report Series 10, Institute for Financial Research.
  18. Claessens, Stijn & Djankov, Simeon & Joseph P. H. Fan & Lang, Larry H. P., 1999. "Expropriation of minority shareholders : evidence from East Asia," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2088, The World Bank.
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