Are Foreign Investors Locusts? The Long-Term Effects of Foreign Institutional Ownership

Are Foreign Investors Locusts? The Long-Term Effects of Foreign Institutional Ownership

Pedro Matos, Giovanna Nicodano

Prof. Pedro Matos (Associate Professor of Business Administration, University of Virginia) presents his paper on "Are Foreign Investors Locusts? The Long-Term Effects of Foreign Institutional Ownership" at the 2016 GCGC Conference in Stockholm. Discussion of the paper is then presented by Prof. Giovanna Nicodano (Professor of Financial Economics, Università di Torino). The full paper and slides from this presentation can be downloaded here: www.gcgc.global

This paper challenges the view that foreign investors lead firms to adopt a short-term orientation and forgo long-term investment. Using a comprehensive sample of publicly listed firms in 30 countries over the 2001-2010 period, we find instead that greater foreign institutional ownership fosters long-term investment in tangible, intangible, and human capital. Foreign institutional ownership also leads to significant increases in innovation output. We identify these effects by exploiting the exogenous variation in foreign institutional ownership that follows the addition of a firm to the MSCI indices. Our results suggest that foreign institutions exert a disciplinary role on entrenched corporate insiders worldwide.

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