The Value of Politically Connected Director: A Natural Experiment in China

Posted: 6 Dec 2017 Last revised: 1 Mar 2018

See all articles by Cameron Truong

Cameron Truong

Monash University; Financial Research Network (FIRN)

Karen Yumin Zhang

Monash University - Department of Accounting

Date Written: February 1, 2018


This study examines the stock price response to the 2013 regulation (Document 18) in China which requires independent directors with political connections to resign from the board of directors of publicly listed firms. We document a significant positive price response in the window surrounding the promulgation date and the response is also of important economic magnitude. The finding suggests that the market views the costs of hiring politically connected directors outweighing the associated benefits. Consistent with this view, politically connected directors display shirking behavior as evidenced by poor board meeting attendance. Further investigations show that the value decreasing of politically connected directors is mainly apparent within regulated industry and varies with earnings management practices. Interestingly, the market views politically connected directors favorably if firms have significant business transactions with the government.

Keywords: political connection, independent director, China, exogenous shock, event study

JEL Classification: M14

Suggested Citation

Truong, Cameron and Zhang, Karen Yumin, The Value of Politically Connected Director: A Natural Experiment in China (February 1, 2018). Available at SSRN:

Cameron Truong

Monash University ( email )

23 Innovation Walk
Wellington Road
Clayton, Victoria 3800

Financial Research Network (FIRN)

C/- University of Queensland Business School
St Lucia, 4071 Brisbane


Karen Yumin Zhang (Contact Author)

Monash University - Department of Accounting ( email )

Building H, Level 3
Caulfield campus
Melbourne, Victoria 3800

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