IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/nbr/nberwo/10998.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Corporate Financing Decisions When Investors Take the Path of Least Resistance

Author

Listed:
  • Malcolm Baker
  • Joshua Coval
  • Jeremy C. Stein

Abstract

We explore the consequences for corporate financial policy that arise when investors exhibit inertial behavior. One implication of investor inertia is that, all else equal, a firm pursuing a strategy of equity-financed growth will prefer a stock-for-stock merger to greenfield investment financed with an SEO. With a merger, acquirer stock is placed in the hands of investors, who, because of inertia, do not resell it all on the open market. If there is downward-sloping demand for acquirer shares, this leads to less price pressure than an SEO, and cheaper equity financing as a result. We develop a simple model to illustrate this idea, and present supporting empirical evidence. Both individual and institutional investors tend to hang on to shares granted them in mergers, with this tendency being much stronger for individuals. Consistent with the model and with this cross-sectional pattern in inertia, acquirers targeting firms with high institutional ownership experience more negative announcement effects and greater announcement volume. Moreover, the results are strongest when the overlap in target and acquirer institutional ownership is low and when the demand curve for the acquirer's shares appears to be steep.

Suggested Citation

  • Malcolm Baker & Joshua Coval & Jeremy C. Stein, 2004. "Corporate Financing Decisions When Investors Take the Path of Least Resistance," NBER Working Papers 10998, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:10998
    Note: CF
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.nber.org/papers/w10998.pdf
    Download Restriction: no

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Zhang, Donghang, 2004. "Why Do IPO Underwriters Allocate Extra Shares when They Expect to Buy Them Back?," Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis, Cambridge University Press, vol. 39(03), pages 571-594, September.
    2. Stewart C. Myers & Nicholas S. Majluf, 1984. "Corporate Financing and Investment Decisions When Firms Have InformationThat Investors Do Not Have," NBER Working Papers 1396, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    3. Myers, Stewart C. & Majluf, Nicholas S., 1984. "Corporate financing and investment decisions when firms have information that investors do not have," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 13(2), pages 187-221, June.
    4. Malmendier, Ulrike & Tate, Geoffrey, 2008. "Who makes acquisitions? CEO overconfidence and the market's reaction," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 89(1), pages 20-43, July.
    5. Hodrick, Laurie Simon, 1999. "Does stock price elasticity affect corporate financial decisions?," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 52(2), pages 225-256, May.
    6. Randall Morck & Andrei Shleifer & Robert W. Vishny, 1990. "The Stock Market and Investment: Is the Market a Sideshow?," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 21(2), pages 157-216.
    7. James J. Choi & David Laibson & Brigitte C. Madrian & Andrew Metrick, 2004. "For Better or for Worse: Default Effects and 401(k) Savings Behavior," NBER Chapters,in: Perspectives on the Economics of Aging, pages 81-126 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    8. Morck, Randall & Shleifer, Andrei & Vishny, Robert W, 1990. " Do Managerial Objectives Drive Bad Acquisitions?," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 45(1), pages 31-48, March.
    9. Stein, Jeremy C, 1996. "Rational Capital Budgeting in an Irrational World," The Journal of Business, University of Chicago Press, vol. 69(4), pages 429-455, October.
    10. Fischer, Stanley & Merton, Robert C., 1984. "Macroeconomics and finance: The role of the stock market," Carnegie-Rochester Conference Series on Public Policy, Elsevier, vol. 21(1), pages 57-108, January.
    11. Chen, Joseph & Hong, Harrison & Stein, Jeremy C., 2002. "Breadth of ownership and stock returns," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 66(2-3), pages 171-205.
    12. Shleifer, Andrei & Vishny, Robert W., 2003. "Stock market driven acquisitions," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 70(3), pages 295-311, December.
    13. Fama, Eugene F. & French, Kenneth R., 1997. "Industry costs of equity," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 43(2), pages 153-193, February.
    14. Jeffrey Wurgler & Ekaterina Zhuravskaya, 2002. "Does Arbitrage Flatten Demand Curves for Stocks?," The Journal of Business, University of Chicago Press, vol. 75(4), pages 583-608, October.
    15. Harrison Hong & José Scheinkman & Wei Xiong, 2006. "Asset Float and Speculative Bubbles," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 61(3), pages 1073-1117, June.
    16. Fama, Eugene F. & French, Kenneth R., 2005. "Financing decisions: who issues stock?," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 76(3), pages 549-582, June.
    17. Akerlof, George A, 1991. "Procrastination and Obedience," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 81(2), pages 1-19, May.
    18. Brad M. Barber & Terrance Odean, 2000. "Trading Is Hazardous to Your Wealth: The Common Stock Investment Performance of Individual Investors," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 55(2), pages 773-806, April.
    19. G. William Schwert, 2000. "Hostility in Takeovers: In the Eyes of the Beholder?," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 55(6), pages 2599-2640, December.
    20. George M. Constantinides, 2005. "Capital Market Equilibrium with Transaction Costs," World Scientific Book Chapters,in: Theory Of Valuation, chapter 7, pages 207-227 World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd..
    21. James J. Choi & David Laibson & Brigitte C. Madrian & Andrew Metrick, 2001. "Defined Contribution Pensions: Plan Rules, Participant Decisions, and the Path of Least Resistance," NBER Working Papers 8655, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    22. Kent Daniel & David Hirshleifer & Avanidhar Subrahmanyam, 1998. "Investor Psychology and Security Market Under- and Overreactions," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 53(6), pages 1839-1885, December.
    23. Greenwood, Robin, 2005. "Short- and long-term demand curves for stocks: theory and evidence on the dynamics of arbitrage," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 75(3), pages 607-649, March.
    24. Gregor Andrade & Mark Mitchell & Erik Stafford, 2001. "New Evidence and Perspectives on Mergers," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 15(2), pages 103-120, Spring.
    25. Terrance Odean, 1998. "Are Investors Reluctant to Realize Their Losses?," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 53(5), pages 1775-1798, October.
    26. Harris, Lawrence E & Gurel, Eitan, 1986. " Price and Volume Effects Associated with Changes in the S&P 500 List: New Evidence for the Existence of Price Pressures," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 41(4), pages 815-829, September.
    27. Barberis, Nicholas & Shleifer, Andrei & Vishny, Robert, 1998. "A model of investor sentiment," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 49(3), pages 307-343, September.
    28. Moeller, Sara B. & Schilngemann, Frederik P. & Stulz, Rene M., 2004. "Do Acquirers with More Uncertain Growth Prospects Gain Less from Acquisitions?," Working Paper Series 2004-19, Ohio State University, Charles A. Dice Center for Research in Financial Economics.
    29. Brigitte C. Madrian & Dennis F. Shea, 2001. "The Power of Suggestion: Inertia in 401(k) Participation and Savings Behavior," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 116(4), pages 1149-1187.
    30. Bergman, Nittai K. & Jenter, Dirk, 2007. "Employee sentiment and stock option compensation," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 84(3), pages 667-712, June.
    31. Mark Mitchell & Todd Pulvino & Erik Stafford, 2004. "Price Pressure around Mergers," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 59(1), pages 31-63, February.
    32. Roll, Richard, 1986. "The Hubris Hypothesis of Corporate Takeovers," The Journal of Business, University of Chicago Press, vol. 59(2), pages 197-216, April.
    33. James J. Choi & David Laibson & Brigitte C. Madrian & Andrew Metrick, 2002. "Defined Contribution Pensions: Plan Rules, Participant Choices, and the Path of Least Resistance," NBER Chapters,in: Tax Policy and the Economy, Volume 16, pages 67-114 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    34. Miller, Edward M, 1977. "Risk, Uncertainty, and Divergence of Opinion," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 32(4), pages 1151-1168, September.
    35. Myers, Stewart C. & Majluf, Nicolás S., 1945-, 1984. "Corporate financing and investment decisions when firms have information that investors do not have," Working papers 1523-84., Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Sloan School of Management.
    36. Jose A. Scheinkman & Wei Xiong, 2003. "Overconfidence and Speculative Bubbles," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 111(6), pages 1183-1219, December.
    37. Harrison Hong & Jeremy C. Stein, 1999. "A Unified Theory of Underreaction, Momentum Trading, and Overreaction in Asset Markets," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 54(6), pages 2143-2184, December.
    38. Paul Oyer, 2004. "Why Do Firms Use Incentives That Have No Incentive Effects?," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 59(4), pages 1619-1650, August.
    39. repec:hrv:faseco:30747159 is not listed on IDEAS
    40. Kahneman, Daniel & Tversky, Amos, 1979. "Prospect Theory: An Analysis of Decision under Risk," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 47(2), pages 263-291, March.
    41. Aditya Kaul & Vikas Mehrotra & Randall Morck, 2000. "Demand Curves for Stocks "Do "Slope Down: New Evidence from an Index Weights Adjustment," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 55(2), pages 893-912, April.
    42. Malcolm Baker & Richard S. Ruback & Jeffrey Wurgler, 2004. "Behavioral Corporate Finance: A Survey," NBER Working Papers 10863, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    43. Kahneman, Daniel & Knetsch, Jack L & Thaler, Richard H, 1990. "Experimental Tests of the Endowment Effect and the Coase Theorem," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 98(6), pages 1325-1348, December.
    44. Daniel Kahneman & Jack L. Knetsch & Richard H. Thaler, 1991. "Anomalies: The Endowment Effect, Loss Aversion, and Status Quo Bias," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 5(1), pages 193-206, Winter.
    45. Lang, Larry H. P. & Stulz, ReneM. & Walkling, Ralph A., 1989. "Managerial performance, Tobin's Q, and the gains from successful tender offers," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 24(1), pages 137-154, September.
    46. Bagwell, Laurie Simon, 1992. " Dutch Auction Repurchases: An Analysis of Shareholder Heterogeneity," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 47(1), pages 71-105, March.
    47. Shefrin, Hersh & Statman, Meir, 1985. " The Disposition to Sell Winners Too Early and Ride Losers Too Long: Theory and Evidence," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 40(3), pages 777-790, July.
    48. Shleifer, Andrei, 1986. " Do Demand Curves for Stocks Slope Down?," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 41(3), pages 579-590, July.
    49. Dierkens, Nathalie, 1991. "Information Asymmetry and Equity Issues," Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis, Cambridge University Press, vol. 26(02), pages 181-199, June.
    50. Thaler, Richard, 1980. "Toward a positive theory of consumer choice," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 1(1), pages 39-60, March.
    51. repec:hrv:faseco:30748164 is not listed on IDEAS
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. Antoinette Schoar & Ebonya L. Washington, 2011. "Are the Seeds of Bad Governance Sown in Good Times?," NBER Working Papers 17061, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Xue, Wen-Jun & Zhang, Li-Wen, 2017. "Stock return autocorrelations and predictability in the Chinese stock market—Evidence from threshold quantile autoregressive models," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 60(C), pages 391-401.
    3. Moeller, Sara B. & Schilngemann, Frederik P. & Stulz, Rene M., 2004. "Do Acquirers with More Uncertain Growth Prospects Gain Less from Acquisitions?," Working Paper Series 2004-19, Ohio State University, Charles A. Dice Center for Research in Financial Economics.
    4. Bergman, Nittai K. & Jenter, Dirk, 2007. "Employee sentiment and stock option compensation," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 84(3), pages 667-712, June.
    5. Massa, Massimo & Zhang, Lei, 2013. "Monetary policy and regional availability of debt financing," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 60(4), pages 439-458.
    6. Marco Ottaviani & Peter Norman Sørensen, 2015. "Price Reaction to Information with Heterogeneous Beliefs and Wealth Effects: Underreaction, Momentum, and Reversal," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 105(1), pages 1-34, January.
    7. de Jong, Abe & Dutordoir, Marie & Verwijmeren, Patrick, 2011. "Why do convertible issuers simultaneously repurchase stock? An arbitrage-based explanation," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 100(1), pages 113-129, April.
    8. Di Giuli, Alberta, 2013. "The effect of stock misvaluation and investment opportunities on the method of payment in mergers," Journal of Corporate Finance, Elsevier, vol. 21(C), pages 196-215.
    9. Jean Helwege & Christo Pirinsky & René M. Stulz, 2007. "Why Do Firms Become Widely Held? An Analysis of the Dynamics of Corporate Ownership," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 62(3), pages 995-1028, June.
    10. Wen-Jun Xue & Li-Wen Zhang, 2016. "Stock Return Autocorrelations and Predictability in the Chinese Stock Market: Evidence from Threshold Quantile Autoregressive Models," Working Papers 1605, Florida International University, Department of Economics.
    11. Gochoco-Bautista, Maria Socorro & Sotocinal, Noli R. & Wang, Jianxin, 2014. "Corporate Investments in Asian Markets: Financial Conditions, Financial Development, and Financial Constraints," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 57(C), pages 63-78.
    12. Malcolm Baker & Richard S. Ruback & Jeffrey Wurgler, 2004. "Behavioral Corporate Finance: A Survey," NBER Working Papers 10863, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    13. Matthew D. Cain & David J. Denis, 2013. "Information Production by Investment Banks: Evidence from Fairness Opinions," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 56(1), pages 245-280.
    14. Ang, Andrew & Hodrick, Robert J. & Xing, Yuhang & Zhang, Xiaoyan, 2009. "High idiosyncratic volatility and low returns: International and further U.S. evidence," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 91(1), pages 1-23, January.
    15. Massa, Massimo & Zhang, Lei, 2009. "Cosmetic mergers: The effect of style investing on the market for corporate control," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 93(3), pages 400-427, September.
    16. Randall Morck, 2008. "Behavioral finance in corporate governance: economics and ethics of the devil’s advocate," Journal of Management & Governance, Springer;Accademia Italiana di Economia Aziendale (AIDEA), vol. 12(2), pages 179-200, May.
    17. Vermaelen, Theo & Xu, Moqi, 2014. "Acquisition finance and market timing," Journal of Corporate Finance, Elsevier, vol. 25(C), pages 73-91.
    18. Matthew D. Cain & David J. Denis, 2010. "Do Fairness Opinion Valuations Contain Useful Information?," Purdue University Economics Working Papers 1244, Purdue University, Department of Economics.
    19. Esther Eiling, 2013. "Industry-Specific Human Capital, Idiosyncratic Risk, and the Cross-Section of Expected Stock Returns," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 68(1), pages 43-84, February.
    20. Andrey Golubov & Dimitris Petmezas & Nickolaos G. Travlos, 2013. "Empirical mergers and acquisitions research: a review of methods, evidence and managerial implications," Chapters,in: Handbook of Research Methods and Applications in Empirical Finance, chapter 12, pages 287-313 Edward Elgar Publishing.
    21. Burns, Natasha & Francis, Bill B. & Hasan, Iftekhar, 2007. "Cross-listing and legal bonding: Evidence from mergers and acquisitions," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 31(4), pages 1003-1031, April.
    22. Kandel, Eugene & Massa, Massimo & Simonov, Andrei, 2011. "Do small shareholders count?," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 101(3), pages 641-665, September.
    23. Beng Soon Chong & Zhenbin Liu, 2016. "CAR associated with SEO share lockups: Real or illusionary?," Review of Quantitative Finance and Accounting, Springer, vol. 47(3), pages 513-541, October.
    24. Gao, Xiaohui & Ritter, Jay R., 2010. "The marketing of seasoned equity offerings," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 97(1), pages 33-52, July.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • G32 - Financial Economics - - Corporate Finance and Governance - - - Financing Policy; Financial Risk and Risk Management; Capital and Ownership Structure; Value of Firms; Goodwill
    • G34 - Financial Economics - - Corporate Finance and Governance - - - Mergers; Acquisitions; Restructuring; Corporate Governance

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:10998. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: () or (Joanne Lustig). General contact details of provider: http://edirc.repec.org/data/nberrus.html .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.