Comovement in Investment

49 Pages Posted: 27 Sep 2007 Last revised: 30 Jan 2013

See all articles by Anzhela Knyazeva

Anzhela Knyazeva

Independent; New York University (NYU) - Leonard N. Stern School of Business

Diana Knyazeva

Independent

Randall Morck

University of Alberta - Department of Finance and Statistical Analysis; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER); European Corporate Governence Institute; Asian Bureau of Finance and Economic Research

Bernard Yin Yeung

National University of Singapore - Business School

Date Written: July 1, 2008

Abstract

This paper examines the propensity of firms to comove in investment decisions. Although stock return comovement and herding among investors received considerable attention in existing work, little is known about correlated investment behavior of firms. After controlling for the similarity of firm characteristics, investments are expected to comove more when firms imitate other firms and rely on public information rather than on firm specific private information about investment opportunities. We consider the effects of agency conflicts on comovement and find evidence in support of managerial shirking of information acquisition effort. Weakly governed managers rely less on private information acquisition and comove more in their investment decisions. Our results also show that the effect is strongest for firms in industries with high information intensity and specialized assets. Further, comovement in investment is decreasing in shareholder rights and property rights protections and increasing in the degree of information asymmetry. The results are obtained after controlling for similarity in firm investment opportunities, correlation in cash flows, fraction of tangible assets, and industry concentration. Critically, we find that comovement in investment has a negative effect on firm and industry performance and productivity growth, after controlling for other factors.

Keywords: investment, comovement, corporate governance, information acquisition, information asymmetry, performance

JEL Classification: G30, G31, G34, K00

Suggested Citation

Knyazeva, Anzhela and Knyazeva, Diana and Morck, Randall K. and Yeung, Bernard Yin, Comovement in Investment (July 1, 2008). Simon School Working Paper. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1017323 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1017323

Anzhela Knyazeva (Contact Author)

Independent ( email )

No Address Available

New York University (NYU) - Leonard N. Stern School of Business ( email )

44 West 4th Street
Suite 9-160
New York, NY NY 10012
United States

Diana Knyazeva

Independent ( email )

No Address Available

Randall K. Morck

University of Alberta - Department of Finance and Statistical Analysis ( email )

2-32C Business Building
Edmonton, Alberta T6G 2R6
Canada
780-492-5683 (Phone)
780-492-3325 (Fax)

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

European Corporate Governence Institute ( email )

c/o ECARES ULB CP 114
B-1050 Brussels
Belgium

Asian Bureau of Finance and Economic Research ( email )

BIZ 2 Storey 4, 04-05
1 Business Link
Singapore, 117592
Singapore

Bernard Yin Yeung

National University of Singapore - Business School ( email )

15 Kent Ridge Drive
BIZ 1 Level 6
Singapore, 119245
Singapore
65 6516 3075 (Phone)
65 6779 1365 (Fax)

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