Corporate Social Responsibility and Shareholder Value: The Environmental Consciousness of Investors
July 18, 2011
This study examines whether shareholders are sensitive to corporations' environmental footprint. Specifically, we conduct an event study around the announcement of corporate news related to environment for all U.S. publicly-traded companies from 1980 to 2009. We find that companies that are reported to behave responsibly towards the environment experience a significant stock price increase, whereas firms that behave irresponsibly face a significant stock price decrease. When we examine how the stock market reaction has evolved over the past three decades, we find that punishment for corporate irresponsible behavior has increased, while the reward for responsible behavior has decreased. These results indicate that, over time, shareholders have become more conscious of the environment and also more demanding towards companies' environmental responsibility.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 29
Keywords: corporate social responsibility, shareholder value, event study, environment
JEL Classification: M14, G14, Q2
Date posted: July 20, 2011