Long-Term Investing as an Agency Problem
13 Pages Posted: 1 Oct 2015 Last revised: 19 Mar 2017
Date Written: July 1, 2015
The agency problems that pervade delegated investment management are exacerbated when investing for the long term, where the payoff is distant and often highly uncertain. These conditions compound the difficulty of aligning and monitoring the agents (managers) responsible for making investment decisions, particularly across multi-layered investment organizations. Problems arise from differences in investment horizons; the tendency to evaluate and reward based on short-term results; and failure to commit. We delve into these issues, and offer some solutions. Investment organizations intending to pursue long-term investing should aim to create an environment where all principals and agents along the chain of delegations are aligned, engaged on an ongoing basis, incentivized to work towards long-term outcomes, and committed to investing for the long run.
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation