Too Much of a Good Thing? Risk Disclosure and Corporate Innovation
54 Pages Posted: 30 Sep 2017 Last revised: 22 Jan 2022
Date Written: January 20, 2022
Using textual analysis of 10-K filings for US firms, we find that the SEC mandate for the disclosure has a negative effect on both the inputs and outputs of corporate innovation, with no corresponding decrease in capital expenditures. By exploiting an SEC regulation change as a quasi-natural experiment, we conduct differences-in-differences and regression discontinuity design tests and identify that it is the mandate for risk disclosure that reduces corporate innovation. Further analysis identifies a potential channel for this; there is a larger negative impact of mandatory risk disclosure on innovation among firms with financial constraints. These results are consistent with theoretical predictions that increased disclosure can have unintended consequences for firms making uncertain investments, such as innovation.
Keywords: Risk, disclosure, innovation, patents, research and development, 10-K filings, Item 1A
JEL Classification: G30, M40, O30, O31, O32
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