Corporate Governance and Performance: The REIT Effect

29 Pages Posted: 22 Feb 2010

See all articles by Rob Bauer

Rob Bauer

Maastricht University

Piet M. A. Eichholtz

University of Maastricht - Limburg Institute of Financial Economics (LIFE)

Nils Kok

University of Maastricht - Limburg Institute of Financial Economics (LIFE)

Abstract

Real estate investment trusts (REITs) offer a natural experiment in corporate governance due to the fact that they leave little free cash flow for management, which reduces agency problems. We exploit a unique and leading corporate governance database to test whether corporate governance matters for the performance of U.S. REITs. We document for a sample including governance ratings of more than 220 REITs that firm value is significantly related to firm-level governance for REITs with low payout ratios only. Repeating the analysis with the complete database that includes more than 5,000 companies and a control sample of firms with high corporate real estate ratios, we find a strong and significantly positive relation between our governance index and several performance variables, indicating that the partial lack of a relation between governance and performance in the real estate sector might be explained by a REIT effect.

Suggested Citation

Bauer, Rob and Eichholtz, Piet M. A. and Kok, Nils, Corporate Governance and Performance: The REIT Effect. Real Estate Economics, Vol. 38, Issue 1, pp. 1-29, Spring 2010. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1555280 or http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1540-6229.2009.00252.x

Rob Bauer

Maastricht University ( email )

P.O. Box 616
Maastricht, 6200 MD
Netherlands
+31 43 3883871 (Phone)

Piet M. A. Eichholtz

University of Maastricht - Limburg Institute of Financial Economics (LIFE) ( email )

P.O. Box 616
Maastricht, 6200 MD
Netherlands
+31 43 3883648 (Phone)
+31 43 3258530 (Fax)

Nils Kok

University of Maastricht - Limburg Institute of Financial Economics (LIFE) ( email )

P.O. Box 616
Maastricht, 6200 MD
Netherlands

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