Carbon Disclosure and the Cost of Capital

52 Pages Posted: 19 Jan 2021 Last revised: 15 Nov 2021

See all articles by Patrick Bolton

Patrick Bolton

Imperial College London; Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR); National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER); European Corporate Governance Institute (ECGI)

Marcin T. Kacperczyk

Imperial College London - Accounting, Finance, and Macroeconomics; Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

Date Written: November 13, 2021

Abstract

We estimate effects of voluntary and mandatory disclosure of carbon emissions on stock returns and volatility using a large global sample of publicly listed firms. We find that voluntary disclosure of scope 1 emissions by companies results in lower stock returns relative to non-disclosing companies. However, a cost of disclosing emissions is increased divestment by institutional investors. We also find that U.K. mandatory carbon disclosure rules for publicly traded companies resulted in lower stock-level uncertainty. The effect of these mandatory disclosure rules also spilled over into other markets, especially those with close geographic and economic proximity, and companies in the same industry.

Keywords: Carbon Emissions, Voluntary and Mandatory Disclosure, Stock Returns

JEL Classification: G12, G23, G30, D62, D83

Suggested Citation

Bolton, Patrick and Kacperczyk, Marcin T., Carbon Disclosure and the Cost of Capital (November 13, 2021). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3755613 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3755613

Patrick Bolton

Imperial College London ( email )

South Kensington Campus
Exhibition Road
London, Greater London SW7 2AZ
United Kingdom

Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

London
United Kingdom

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

European Corporate Governance Institute (ECGI)

c/o the Royal Academies of Belgium
Rue Ducale 1 Hertogsstraat
1000 Brussels
Belgium

HOME PAGE: http://www.ecgi.org

Marcin T. Kacperczyk (Contact Author)

Imperial College London - Accounting, Finance, and Macroeconomics ( email )

South Kensington campus
London SW7 2AZ
United Kingdom

Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR) ( email )

London
United Kingdom

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