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Accounting for Taste: Board Member Preferences and Corporate Policy Choices

  • Richardson, Scott
  • Tuna, A. Irem
  • Wysocki, Peter D.

This paper explores whether firms that share common directors also pursue similar corporate policies. Using a sample of 885 U.S. firms with common directors, we find that director fixed effects strongly explain variation in firms' governance, financial, disclosure, and strategic policy choices. Moreover, the director fixed effects provide incremental explanatory power over traditional economic determinants of firms' policies. consistent with our hypotheses, the director effects are less pronounced in large firms, in firms with more outside board members, and for directors with numerous outside board appointments. Our evidence is more consistent with directors and firms "matching" their policy preferences rather than directors "imposing" their policy preferences on firms

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File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/1721.1/3515
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Paper provided by Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Sloan School of Management in its series Working papers with number 4307-03.

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Date of creation: 23 May 2003
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Handle: RePEc:mit:sloanp:3515
Contact details of provider: Postal: MASSACHUSETTS INSTITUTE OF TECHNOLOGY (MIT), SLOAN SCHOOL OF MANAGEMENT, 50 MEMORIAL DRIVE CAMBRIDGE MASSACHUSETTS 02142 USA
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Web page: http://mitsloan.mit.edu/
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  1. Bhushan, Ravi, 1989. "Firm characteristics and analyst following," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 11(2-3), pages 255-274, July.
  2. Aboody, David & Kasznik, Ron & Williams, Michael, 2000. "Purchase versus pooling in stock-for-stock acquisitions: Why do firms care?," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 29(3), pages 261-286, June.
  3. Benjamin E. Hermalin & Michael S. Weisbach, 2001. "Boards of Directors as an Endogenously Determined Institution: A Survey of the Economic Literature," NBER Working Papers 8161, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Tim Opler & Lee Pinkowitz & Rene Stulz & Rohan Williamson, 1997. "The Determinants and Implications of Corporate Cash Holdings," NBER Working Papers 6234, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Hallock, Kevin F., 1997. "Reciprocally Interlocking Boards of Directors and Executive Compensation," Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis, Cambridge University Press, vol. 32(03), pages 331-344, September.
  6. Kasznik, Ron & Aboody, David & Williams, Michael, 2000. "Purchase versus Pooling in Stock-for-Stock Acquisitions: Why Do Firms Care?," Research Papers 1614, Stanford University, Graduate School of Business.
  7. Brickley, James A. & Coles, Jeffrey L. & Jarrell, Gregg, 1997. "Leadership structure: Separating the CEO and Chairman of the Board," Journal of Corporate Finance, Elsevier, vol. 3(3), pages 189-220, June.
  8. Murphy, Kevin J., 1999. "Executive compensation," Handbook of Labor Economics, in: O. Ashenfelter & D. Card (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 38, pages 2485-2563 Elsevier.
  9. Nagar, Venky & Nanda, Dhananjay & Wysocki, Peter, 2003. "Discretionary disclosure and stock-based incentives," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 34(1-3), pages 283-309, January.
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