Effects of Outsider’s Monitoring on Capital Structure and Corporate Growth Strategy: Evidence from a Natural Experiment

Journal of Business Ethics 152 (2):459-475 (2018)

Debt-ridden corporate growth and increased vulnerability was one of the causes of the 1997 financial crisis in Korea. Introduction of the outside director system has been the core part of the board reforms following the crisis. Our estimation using instruments obtained from a natural experiment illustrates that outside monitoring has improved capital structure of firms even when we control for the leverage regulation effect, enhanced compliance with leverage regulation and thus reduced business risks, and reduced excessive growth and excessive investment more consistently for the top 10 largest chaebols than non-chaebol firms and smaller sized chaebol affiliates. Our results shed some light on why existing studies report the positive effect of outsiders on firm value and add value to existing agency theory by illustrating that the effect of improved governance on capital structure could be non-linear.
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DOI 10.1007/s10551-016-3281-9
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