The Effects of Antitrust Laws on Horizontal Mergers: International Evidence
Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis,
This study examines how antitrust law adoptions affect horizontal merger and acquisition (M&A) outcomes. Using the staggered introduction of competition laws in 20 countries, we find antitrust regulation decreases acquirers’ five-day cumulative abnormal returns surrounding horizontal merger announcements. A decrease in deal value, target book assets, and industry peers' announcement returns are consistent with the market power hypothesis. Exploiting antitrust law adoptions addresses a downward bias to an estimated effect of antitrust enforcement (Baker (2003)). The potential bias from heterogeneous treatment effects does not nullify our results. Overall, antitrust policies seem to deter post-merger monopolistic gains, potentially improving customer welfare.
SSRN Discussion Paper,
This paper documents the rise of "poison bonds", which are corporate bonds that allow bondholders to demand immediate repayment in a change-of-control event. The share of poison bonds among new issues has grown substantially in recent years, from below 20% in the 90s to over 60% after 2005. This increase is predominantly driven by investment-grade issues. We provide causal evidence that the pressure to eliminate poison pills has led firms to issue poison bonds as an alternative. Further analyses suggest that this practice entrenches incumbent managers, coincidentally benefits bondholders, but destroys shareholder value. Holding a portfolio of firms that remove poison pills but promptly issue poison bonds results in negative abnormal returns of -7.3% per year. Our findings have important implications for understanding the agency benefits and costs of debt: (1) more debt does not necessarily discipline the management; and (2) even without financial distress, managerial entrenchment can lead to conflicts between shareholders and creditors.
Employment Effects of Investment Grants and Firm Heterogeneity – Evidence from a Staggered Treatment Adoption Approach
IWH Discussion Papers,
This study estimates the establishment-level employment effects of investment grants in Germany. In addition to the average treatment effect on the treated, we analyse the influence of establishment’s characteristics and economic environment on the magnitude of the effect. We apply a modification of Heckman’s matching and difference-in-differences approach to consider time-varying treatment and different treatment durations. Our results suggest that investment grants positively impact employment. Moreover, we find strong evidence for effect heterogeneity regarding firms’ internal characteristics as well as the economic environment.
IWH Doctoral Programme in Economics
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IWH-DPE Call for Applications – Fall 2024 Intake
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Student assistant (f/m/x) (CompNet) The Halle Institute for Economic Research (IWH)...
Joint Economic Forecast
Joint Economic Forecast The joint economic forecast is an instrument for evaluating...
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The Nasty Gap 30 years after unification: Why East Germany is still 20% poorer than the...