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K.J. Martijn Cremers--Thirty Years of Shareholder Rights and Firm Valuation

Professor Martijn Cremers has co-authored a new research article, Thirty Years of Shareholder Rights and Firm Valuation, that introduces the concept of a new hand-collected dataset that tracked restrictions on shareholder rights at approximately 1,000 firms from 1978-1989. In conjunction with 1990-2006 IRRC data, the authors tracked firms’ shareholder rights over thirty years. Most governance changes occurred during the 1980s. The data found a robustly negative association between restrictions on shareholder rights (using the G-Index as a proxy) and Tobin’s Q. The negative association only appears after the judicial approval of antitakeover defenses in the 1985 landmark Delaware Supreme Court decision of Moran v. Household. This decision was an unanticipated, exogenous shock that increased the importance of shareholder rights.

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