Reputation Concerns of Independent Directors: Evidence from Individual Director Voting
Review of Financial Studies, Forthcoming
59 Pages Posted: 16 Mar 2012 Last revised: 5 Dec 2015
Date Written: July 1, 2012
Using a unique dataset of board proposal voting by individual independent directors of public companies in China from 2004 to 2009, we analyze the effects of career concerns and current reputation stock on independent directors’ propensity to confront management. Younger directors and directors in their second (and last) terms, who have stronger outside career concerns, are more likely to be aligned with investors rather than the managers. Directors with higher reputation stocks (measured by mentions in news articles and the number of board seats) are also more likely to dissent. Their dissenting behavior is eventually rewarded in the market place in the form of more outside career opportunities and the avoidance of regulatory sanctions. Finally, we find that career concerns are significantly stronger among directors who already enjoy higher reputation.
Keywords: Independent directors, director voting, career concerns
JEL Classification: G34, L25
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation