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Equity Sales and Manager Efficiency Across Firms and the Business Cycle

Karen Lewis and Fabio Ghironi ()
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Karen Lewis: University of Pennsylvania

No 1079, 2014 Meeting Papers from Society for Economic Dynamics

Abstract: Smaller firms sell more equity in response to expansions than do larger firms. Also, consumption is more pro-cyclical for high income groups than others. In this paper, we present a model that captures key features of both of these patterns found in recent empirical studies. Managers own firms with unique differentiated products and can sell ownership in these firms. Equity sales require paying consulting fees, but the resulting scrutiny also make firms more efficient. We find four main results: (1) Equity sales are pro-cylical since the benefits of higher profits outweigh the consulting fees during a boom. (2) Equity shares in smaller firms are more pro-cyclical because expansions induce previously solely-owned firms to seek outside equity financing. (3) Households must absorb the increased equity sales by managers, thereby affecting their consumption response relative to managers. (4) Greater underlying managerial inefficiency induces more firms to seek outside advice and ownership in equilibrium. As a result, the cyclical impact on efficiency is mitigated by outside ownership.

New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-dge
Date: 2014
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Working Paper: Equity Sales and Manager Efficiency Across Firms and the Business Cycle (2011) Downloads
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