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Look at Me Now: What Attracts U.S. Shareholders?

Author

Listed:
  • John Ammer
  • Sara B. Holland
  • David C. Smith
  • Francis E. Warnock

Abstract

This paper investigates the underlying determinants of home bias using a comprehensive data set on U.S. investors' aggregate holdings of every foreign stock. Among those foreign stocks that are not listed on U.S. exchanges, which account for more than 96 percent of our usable data sample, we find that U.S. investors prefer firms with characteristics associated with greater information transparency, such as stronger home-country accounting standards. We document that a U.S. cross-listing is economically important, as U.S. ownership of a foreign firm roughly doubles upon cross-listing in the United States. We explore the cross-sectional variation in this "cross-listing effect" and find that the increase in U.S. investment is greatest for firms that are from weak accounting backgrounds and are otherwise informationally opaque, suggesting that the key effect of cross-listing is improvements in disclosure that are valued by U.S. investors. By contrast, cross-listing does not increase the appeal of stocks from countries with weak shareholder rights, suggesting that U.S. cross-listing cannot substitute for legal protections in the home country. Nor does the cross-listing effect appear to be driven simply by increased "familiarity"� with the stock or lowered cross-border transactions costs.

Suggested Citation

  • John Ammer & Sara B. Holland & David C. Smith & Francis E. Warnock, 2006. "Look at Me Now: What Attracts U.S. Shareholders?," NBER Working Papers 12500, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:12500
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    Cited by:

    1. Stephanie E. Curcuru & Charles P. Thomas & Francis E. Warnock, 2009. "Current Account Sustainability and Relative Reliability," NBER Chapters,in: NBER International Seminar on Macroeconomics 2008, pages 67-109 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Desai, Mihir A. & Dharmapala, Dhammika, 2009. "Taxes, institutions and foreign diversification opportunities," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 93(5-6), pages 703-714, June.
    3. Stephanie E. Curcuru & Tomas Dvorak & Francis E. Warnock, 2008. "Cross-Border Returns Differentials," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 123(4), pages 1495-1530.
    4. René M. Stulz, 2009. "Securities Laws, Disclosure, and National Capital Markets in the Age of Financial Globalization," Journal of Accounting Research, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 47(2), pages 349-390, May.
    5. Gozzi, Juan Carlos & Levine, Ross & Schmukler, Sergio L., 2008. "Internationalization and the evolution of corporate valuation," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 88(3), pages 607-632, June.
    6. Stephanie E. Curcuru & Tomas Dvorak & Francis E. Warnock, 2007. "The stability of large external imbalances: the role of returns differentials," International Finance Discussion Papers 894, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
    7. Stephanie E. Curcuru & Charles P. Thomas & Francis E. Warnock & Jon Wongswan, 2011. "US International Equity Investment and Past and Prospective Returns," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 101(7), pages 3440-3455, December.
    8. Curcuru, Stephanie E. & Dvorak, Tomas & Warnock, Francis E., 2010. "Decomposing the U.S. external returns differential," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 80(1), pages 22-32, January.
    9. Bae, Kee-Hong & Stulz, René M. & Tan, Hongping, 2008. "Do local analysts know more? A cross-country study of the performance of local analysts and foreign analysts," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 88(3), pages 581-606, June.
    10. Stulze, Rene M., 2008. "Securities Laws, Disclosure, and National Capital Markets in the Age of Financial Globalization," Working Paper Series 2008-13, Ohio State University, Charles A. Dice Center for Research in Financial Economics.
    11. Stephanie E. Curcuru & Charles P. Thomas & Francis E. Warnock & Jon Wongswan, 2011. "U.S. international equity investment and past prospective returns," International Finance Discussion Papers 1016, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
    12. Christelis, Dimitris & Georgarakos, Dimitris, 2013. "Investing at home and abroad: Different costs, different people?," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 37(6), pages 2069-2086.
    13. Mihir A. Desai & Dhammika Dharmapala, 2007. "Taxes and Portfolio Choice: Evidence from JGTRRA's Treatment of International Dividends," NBER Working Papers 13281, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • G11 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Portfolio Choice; Investment Decisions
    • G15 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - International Financial Markets
    • G3 - Financial Economics - - Corporate Finance and Governance
    • M4 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting; Personnel Economics - - Accounting

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