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Are bank shareholders enemies of regulators or a potential source of market discipline?

In moral hazard models, bank shareholders have incentives to transfer wealth from the deposit insurer--that is, maximize put option value--by pursuing riskier strategies. For safe banks with large charter value, however, the risk-taking incentive is outweighed by the possibility of losing charter value. Focusing on the relationship between book value, market value, and a risk measure, this paper develops a semi-parametric model for estimating the critical level of bank risk at which put option value starts to dominate charter value. From these estimates, we infer the extent to which the ...
Staff Reports , Paper 138

Working Paper
Concentrated shareholdings and the number of outside analysts

Assuming some fixed cost to information acquisition, diffuse shareholders in publicly held firms have little incentive to produce information that can substitute for the services of financial analysts. However, we argue that concentrated shareholdings, either by outsiders like institutions or by inside managers, reduce the demand for analyst services. The former group finds it worthwhile to produce its own information and avoid any moral hazard problems associated with analyst forecasts, while the concentration of shareholdings by insiders reduces the moral hazard problem associated with ...
FRB Atlanta Working Paper , Paper 99-7

Working Paper
From the horse's mouth: gauging conditional expected stock returns from investor surveys

We use data obtained from a series of Michigan Surveys of Consumer Attitudes to study stock market beliefs and portfolio choices of individual investors. We find that expected returns over the medium- and long-term horizon appear to be extrapolated from past realized returns. The findings also indicate that a more optimistic assessment of macroeconomic conditions coincides with higher expected returns and lower expected volatility, implying strongly procyclical Sharpe ratios. These results are given added credence by the empirical finding that reported portfolio concentrations in equities ...
Finance and Economics Discussion Series , Paper 2005-26

Journal Article
Executive equity compensation and incentives: a survey

Stock and option compensation and the level of managerial equity incentives are aspects of corporate governance that are especially controversial to shareholders, institutional activists, and government regulators. Similar to much of the corporate finance and corporate governance literature, research on stock-based compensation and incentives has not only generated useful insights, but also produced many contradictory findings. Not surprisingly, many fundamental questions remain unanswered. In this study, the authors synthesize the broad literature on equity-based compensation and executive ...
Economic Policy Review , Volume 9 , Issue Apr , Pages 27-50

Working Paper
Expectations of risk and return among household investors: Are their Sharpe ratios countercyclical?

Data obtained from special questions on the Michigan Survey of Consumer Attitudes over several years are used to analyze stock market beliefs and portfolio choices of household investors. Consistent with other survey results, expected future returns appear to be extrapolated from past realized returns. The data also indicate that expected risk and return are strongly influenced by economic prospects. When investors believe macroeconomic conditions are more expansionary, they tend to expect both higher returns and lower volatility, which implies that household Sharpe ratios are procyclical. ...
Finance and Economics Discussion Series , Paper 2008-17

Journal Article
A survey of blockholders and corporate control

The author surveys the empirical literature on large-percentage shareholders in public corporations, focusing on four key issues: the prevalence of blockholders; the motivation for block ownership; the effect of blockholders on executive compensation, leverage, the incidence of takeovers, and a wide range of corporate decisions; and the effect of blockholders on firm value. A central finding of this study is that there is little reason for policymakers or small investors to fear large-percentage shareholders in general, especially when the blockholders are active in firm management.
Economic Policy Review , Volume 9 , Issue Apr , Pages 51-64

Working Paper
Large shareholders and market discipline in a regulated industry: a clinical study of Mellon Bank

An analysis of the 1987 change in control at Mellon, which was one of only a few banks with a large shareholder. It finds that the large shareholder did not monitor the firm extensively before it experienced performance difficulties, but was able to enforce a management change when problems arose without having to acquire a majority stake.
Working Papers (Old Series) , Paper 9803

Working Paper
Belief dispersion among household investors and stock trading volume

We study the effects of belief dispersion on stock trading volume. Unlike most of the existing work on the subject, our paper focuses on how household investors' disagreements on macroeconomic variables influence market-wide trading volume. We show that greater belief dispersion among household investors is associated with significantly higher trading volume, even after controlling for the disagreements among professional forecasters. Further, we find that the belief dispersion among household investors who are more likely to own stocks has more pronounced effects on trading volume, ...
Finance and Economics Discussion Series , Paper 2011-39

Working Paper
Information and voting power in the proxy process

We document shareholder support for wealth-decreasing changes in corporate governance in the form of antitakeover charter amendments. the enactment of these amendments is shown to be related to ownership structure. This gives rise to a sample selection bias that contaminates traditional event-study results and explains the discrepancy between our findings and those reported in previous studies. We also provide evidence that strategic behavior by managers plays a role in the adoption of these amendments.
Working Papers (Old Series) , Paper 9011

Periodic Essay
Japan's cross-shareholding legacy: the financial impact on banks

Japanese banks' financial results for the Fiscal Year Ending (FYE) March 2009 marked their worst performance in recent years. Although soaring loan loss charges contributed to the banks' weak performances, losses on equity securities were also a key driver. These losses have drawn renewed attention to the practice of Japanese banks owning stock in the companies to which they lend through so-called cross-shareholdings, and the market risk resulting from these holdings. This Asia Focus provides a brief background on the development of cross-shareholding. The report also examines some of the ...
Asia Focus , Issue Aug


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