The Diversity of Corporate Board Committees and Financial Performance
41 Pages Posted: 24 Mar 2008
Date Written: March 1, 2008
We examine the relationship between the gender and ethnic minority diversity of the board of directors and the financial performance of the firm. The research is unique because we analyze the diversity of important board committees to gain greater insight into the way diversity affects board functions and shareholder value. Our sample consists of all firms listed in the Fortune 500 over the period 1998-2002 which yields a panel of data with approximately 2,000 firm years. The results of three-stage least-squares estimation support the conclusion that board diversity has a positive effect on financial performance as measured by Tobin's q. The evidence on board committees indicates that gender diversity has a positive effect on financial performance primarily through the audit function of the board and ethnic diversity impacts financial performance through all three functions of the board we investigate, audit, executive compensation, and director nomination.
Keywords: corporate governance, board committees, diversity, financial performance
JEL Classification: G34
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation