The Forward-looking Disclosures of Corporate Managers: Theory and Evidence
IWH Discussion Papers,
We consider an infinitely repeated game in which a privately informed, long-lived manager raises funds from short-lived investors in order to finance a project. The manager can signal project quality to investors by making a (possibly costly) forward-looking disclosure about her project’s potential for success. We find that if the manager’s disclosures are costly, she will never release forward-looking statements that do not convey information to external investors. Furthermore, managers of firms that are transparent and face significant disclosure-related costs will refrain from forward-looking disclosures. In contrast, managers of opaque and profitable firms will follow a policy of accurate disclosures. To test our findings empirically, we devise an index that captures the quantity of forward-looking disclosures in public firms’ 10-K reports, and relate it to multiple firm characteristics. For opaque firms, our index is positively correlated with a firm’s profitability and financing needs. For transparent firms, there is only a weak relation between our index and firm fundamentals. Furthermore, the overall level of forward-looking disclosures declined significantly between 2001 and 2009, possibly as a result of the 2002 Sarbanes-Oxley Act.
Television Role Models and Fertility: Evidence from a Natural Experiment
SOEPpapers, Nr. 752,
In this paper we study the effect of television exposure on fertility. We exploit a natural experiment that took place in Germany after WWII. For topographical reasons, Western TV programs, which promoted one/no child families, could not be received in certain parts of East Germany. Using an IV approach, we find robust evidence that watching West German TV results in lower fertility. This conclusion is robust to alternative model specifications and data sets. Our results imply that individual fertility decisions are affected by role models or information about other ways of life promoted by media.
Methodical limits of calculating productivity in the new Länder
IWH Discussion Papers,
The „Arbeitskreis Volkswirtschaftliche Gesamtrechnung der Länder“ now publishes figures concerning the value added in Germany. Formerly the Statistische Bundesamt had this assignment. Some corporations have plant locations in the new Länder as well as in the old Länder. The employed method for splitting-up the value added produce by these corporations might lead to an underestimation of the overall value added produced in the new Länder. However, an estimation using the firm panel of the IAB shows that the East German productivity gap for manufacturing is overestimated by maximally two percentage points. Still in sectors that are dominated by multi plant corporations this effect is stronger. All in all the East German productivity gab is overestimated by maximally three percentage points.
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