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Gender Quotas: Challenging the Boards, Performance, and the Stock Market

Giulia Ferrari, Valeria Ferraro, Paola Profeta () and Chiara Pronzato ()

No 43 JEL Classification: J20, J48, J78, CHILD Working Papers Series from Centre for Household, Income, Labour and Demographic Economics (CHILD) - CCA

Abstract: In 2011, Italy introduced gender quotas for boards of directors of companies listed on its stock market. Comparing before and after the reform within firms, we find that quotas are associated with a higher share of female board directors, higher levels of education of board members, and a lower share of older members. We then use the reform period as an instrument for the share of female directors and find no significant impact on firms’ performance. Interestingly, we find that the share of female directors is associated with a lower variability of stock market prices. We also run event studies on the stock price reaction to the introduction of gender quotas. A positive effect of the quota law on stock market returns emerges at the date of the board’s election. Our results are consistent with gender quotas giving rise to a beneficial restructuring of the board, which is positively received by the market.

Keywords: education; age; financial markets (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Pages: 69 pages
Date: 2017
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-gen
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Working Paper: Gender Quotas: Challenging the Boards, Performance, and the Stock Market (2016) Downloads
Working Paper: Gender Quotas: Challenging the Boards, Performance and the Stock Market (2016) Downloads
Working Paper: Gender Quotas: Challenging the Boards, Performance, and the Stock Market (2016) Downloads
Working Paper: Gender Quotas: Challenging the Boards, Performance, and the Stock Market (2016) Downloads
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