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Keywords:Sovereign wealth fund 

Working Paper
Sovereign wealth funds: stylized facts about their determinants and governance
This paper presents statistical analysis supporting stylized facts about sovereign wealth funds (SWFs). It discusses the forces leading to the growth of SWFs, including the role of fuel exports and ongoing current account surpluses, and large hoarding of international reserves. It analyzes the degree to which measures of SWF governance and transparency compare with national norms of behavior. We provide evidence that many countries with SWFs are characterized by effective governance but weak democratic institutions, as compared to other nonindustrial countries. We also present a model with which we compare the optimal degree of diversification abroad by a central bank versus that of a sovereign wealth fund. We show that if the central bank manages its foreign assets with the objective of reducing the probability of sudden stops, it will place a high weight on the downside risk of holding risky assets abroad and will tend to hold primarily safe foreign assets. In contrast, if the sovereign wealth fund, acting on behalf of the Treasury, maximizes the expected utility of a representative domestic agent, it will opt for relatively greater holding of more risky foreign assets. We discuss how the degree of a country's transparency may affect the size of the foreign asset base entrusted to a wealth fund's management, and show that, for relatively low levels of public foreign assets, assigning portfolio management independence to the central bank may be advantageous. However, for a large enough foreign asset base, the opportunity cost associated with the limited portfolio diversification of the central bank induces authorities to establish a wealth fund in pursuit of higher returns.
AUTHORS: Glick, Reuven; Aizenman, Joshua
DATE: 2008

Working Paper
Asset class diversification and delegation of responsibilities between central banks and sovereign wealth funds
This paper presents a model comparing the optimal degree of asset class diversification abroad by a central bank and a sovereign wealth fund. We show that if the central bank manages its foreign asset holdings in order to meet balance of payments needs, particularly in reducing the probability of sudden stops in foreign capital inflows, it will place a high weight on holding safer foreign assets. In contrast, if the sovereign wealth fund, acting on behalf of the Treasury, maximizes the expected utility of a representative domestic agent, it will opt for relatively greater holding of more risky foreign assets. We also show how the diversification differences between the strategies of the bank and SWF is affected by the government?s delegation of responsibilities and by various parameters of the economy, such as the volatility of equity returns and the total amount of public foreign assets available for management.
AUTHORS: Aizenman, Joshua; Glick, Reuven
DATE: 2010

Working Paper
Friends or foes? The stock price impact of sovereign wealth fund investments and the price of keeping secrets
This paper examines the stock price impact of 163 announcements of Sovereign Wealth Fund (SWF) investments. We document an average positive risk-adjusted return of 2.1 percent for target firms during two days surrounding SWF acquisition announcements. The announcement effect is both statistically and economically significant. A multivariate analysis shows that the degree of transparency of SWF activities is an important determinant of the market reaction, and both the SWF and the existing shareholders of the target firm benefit from improved SWF disclosure. In addition, target firms' profitability, growth, and governance do not change significantly in the three-year period following the SWF investment relative to a control sample. These results are robust to a battery of tests. Overall, our findings suggest that SWF investments convey a positive signal to market participants about the target firm, increased SWF transparency is enjoyed by both the SWF and existing shareholders, and SWFs are passive investors.
AUTHORS: Kotter, Jason; Lel, Ugur
DATE: 2008

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