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International evidence on the value of product and geographic diversity

  • Laeven, Luc

The author examines the effect of product and geographic diversification on firm value for a sample of 1,914 corporations in 18 countries. His results indicate that both product and geographic diversification destroy value at high levels of diversification, suggesting that agency and influence costs arising from the increased complexity outweigh the benefits of diversification at high levels. Geographic diversification is valuable at low levels, however. The author finds that insider ownership is associated with less diversification, across both product and geographic segments, suggesting that insiders view corporate diversification as value destroying.

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Paper provided by The World Bank in its series Policy Research Working Paper Series with number 2729.

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Date of creation: 31 Dec 2001
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Handle: RePEc:wbk:wbrwps:2729
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  1. 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.
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  19. Owen A. Lamont, 2001. "The Diversification Discount: Cash Flows Versus Returns," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 56(5), pages 1693-1721, October.
  20. Claessens, Stijn & Djankov, Simeon & Fan, Joseph P.H. & Lang, Larry H.P., 2001. "The Pattern and Valuation Effects of Corporate Diversification: A Comparison of the United States, Japan, and other East Asian Economies," Working Paper Series UNU-WIDER Research Paper , World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
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  22. Berger, Philip G & Ofek, Eli, 1999. "Causes and Effects of Corporate Refocusing Programs," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 12(2), pages 311-45.
  23. Steven M. Fazzari & R. Glenn Hubbard & BRUCE C. PETERSEN, 1988. "Financing Constraints and Corporate Investment," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 19(1), pages 141-206.
  24. Larry Lang & Annette Poulsen & Rene M. Stulz, 1994. "Asset Sales, Firm Performance, and the Agency Costs of Managerial Discretion," NBER Working Papers 4654, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  27. Ronald C. Anderson & Thomas W. Bates & John M. Bizjak & Michael L. Lemmon, 2000. "Corporate Governance and Firm Diversification," Financial Management, Financial Management Association, vol. 29(1), Spring.
  28. Denis, David J & Denis, Diane K & Sarin, Atulya, 1997. " Agency Problems, Equity Ownership, and Corporate Diversification," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 52(1), pages 135-60, March.
  29. Reid W. Click & Paul Harrison, 2000. "Does multinationality matter? Evidence of value destruction in U.S. multinational corporations," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 2000-21, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  30. Claessens, Stijn & Djankov, Simeon & Fan, Joseph P.H. & Lang, Larry H.P., 2001. "The Benefits and Costs of Internal Markets: Evidence from Asia's Financial Crisis," CEI Working Paper Series 2001-15, Center for Economic Institutions, Institute of Economic Research, Hitotsubashi University.
  31. Matsusaka, John G, 2001. "Corporate Diversification, Value Maximization, and Organizational Capabilities," The Journal of Business, University of Chicago Press, vol. 74(3), pages 409-31, July.
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