Do Shareholder Coalitions Affect Agency Costs? Evidence from Italian Listed Companies
Research in International Business and Finance, Forthcoming
Posted: 2 Mar 2018
Date Written: February 21, 2018
This study investigates the relationship between agency costs and ownership structure for a sample of listed Italian companies to determine the impact of shareholder coalitions on agency costs. Using a balanced panel dataset of 1,956 firm-year observations for the period 2002−2013, the results provide evidence that ownership concentration and debt play a limited role in monitoring agency costs, whereas the type of shareholder plays an important role in either mitigating or exacerbating agency costs. Family-controlled firms and coalitions among non-controlling shareholders seem helpful in reducing agency costs. The results suggest that coalitions among non-controlling shareholders both in family and non-family firms reduce agency costs. The findings also indicate that multiple blockholders play a key role as mediators. The paper provides a new perspective on assessing the role of agency costs in a bank-based, civil law country. The results enable one to better understand the impact of blockholders on agency costs and their interactions within family-controlled firms. The results also provide support for both the entrenchment effect and the alignment-of-interests hypothesis.
Keywords: agency theory; debt; ownership structure; multiple blockholders; family-controlled firms; GMM estimation
JEL Classification: G32; G34
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation