Recent empirical research shows evidence of a positive relationship between the quality of firm‐specific corporate governance and firm valuation. Instead of looking at one single corporate governance mechanism in isolation, we construct a broad corporate governance index and apply five additional variables related to ownership structure, board characteristics, and leverage to provide a comprehensive description of firm‐level corporate governance for a representative sample of Swiss firms. To control for potential endogeneity of these six governance mechanisms, we develop a system of simultaneous equations and apply three‐stage least squares (3SLS). Our results support the widespread hypothesis of a positive relationship between corporate governance and firm valuation.
Leider wurde noch nichts zu Heinz Zimmermann geschrieben
We investigate the conditional performance of a sample of German equity mutual funds over the period from 1994 to 2003 using both the beta-pricing approach and the stochastic discount factor (SDF) framework. On average, mutual funds cannot generate excess returns relative to their benchmark that are large enough to cover their total expenses. Compared to unconditional alphas, fund performance sharply deteriorates when we measure conditional alphas. Given that stock returns are to some extent predictable based on publicly available information, conditional performance evaluation raises the benchmark for active fund managers because it gives them no credit for exploiting readily available information. Underperformance is more pronounced in the SDF framework than in beta-pricing models. The fund performance measures derived from alternative model specifications differ depending on the number of primitive assets taken to calibrate the SDF as well as the number of instrument variables used to scale assets and/or factors.
Recent empirical work shows evidence for higher valuation of firms in countries with a better legal environment. We investigate whether differences in the quality of firm‐level corporate governance also help to explain firm performance in a cross‐section of companies within a single jurisdiction. Constructing a broad corporate governance rating (CGR) for German public firms, we document a positive relationship between governance practices and firm valuation. There is also evidence that expected stock returns are negatively correlated with firm‐level corporate governance, if dividend yields are used as proxies for the cost of capital. An investment strategy that bought high‐CGR firms and shorted low‐CGR firms earned abnormal returns of around 12% on an annual basis during the sample period.
We analyze the heterogeneity in asset allocation decisions of different investor groups in response to changes in the macroeconomic environment. Using a new data set that includes the monthly portfolio holdings of private, commercial, and institutional investors deposited with Swiss banks, we estimate the relationship between equity and bond holdings and common business cycle indicators. Regression analysis indicates that private investors do not systematically move from stocks into bonds by selling stocks to institutional investors and purchasing bonds from them in adverse macroeconomic states. A VAR-error correction framework including cointegration and error correction restrictions suggests that the investment behavior of commercial investors leads and private investors follow in their investment decisions only slowly over time. The asset allocation decisions of institutional investors are not affected by the actions of private and commercial investors. Our results refute a principle of “institutional irrelevance”.