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Employee stock ownership and the cost of capital11We are grateful to the Editor in Chief, Thomas Lagoarde-Segot and to participants at 2016 French accounting association conference, 2015 French finance association conference, the 2014 International corporate governance for their useful comments and suggestions. Siessima Djibril Toé provided excellent research assistance. All remaining errors are our own

Nicolas Aubert (), Alexander Kern and Xavier Hollandts

Research in International Business and Finance, 2017, vol. 41, issue C, 67-78

Abstract: This paper investigates the relationship between employee stock ownership and the cost of capital, the main determinant of shareholder value creation computed through economic value added (EVA). By reducing agency conflicts within the firm, we hypothesize that employee share ownership reduces the firm’s cost of capital by affecting its two components, i.e. the cost of equity and the cost of debt. We test this hypothesis in France, a leading country in terms of employee ownership, based on a panel of the 120 largest listed companies for the 2000–2011 period. We find: (i) no significant relationship between employee stock ownership and the cost of equity; (ii) a negative curvilinear relationship between employee stock ownership and the cost of debt; (ii) a negative curvilinear relationship between employee stock ownership and the weighted average cost of capital. These results suggest debtholders regard ESO as positive as long it is moderate because it shifts risk from them to employees and that this effect is still perceptible in the weighted average cost of capital.

Keywords: Shared capitalism employee ownership; Corporate governance; Cost of equity; Cost of debt; Cost of capital; Agency conflicts (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: J33 J54 J63 L74 L85 M52 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2017
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Persistent link: https://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:eee:riibaf:v:41:y:2017:i:c:p:67-78

DOI: 10.1016/j.ribaf.2017.04.007

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