Surfing the Green Wave: What’s in a “Green” Name Change?

42 Pages Posted: 20 Dec 2023

See all articles by Carmelo Latino

Carmelo Latino

Leibniz Institute for Financial Research SAFE

Date Written: December 19, 2023


This paper investigates stock market reaction to greenwashing by analyzing a new channel whereby companies change their names to green-related ones (i.e., names that evoke green and sustainable sentiments) to persuade the public that their activities are green. The findings reveal a striking positive stock price reaction to the announcement of corporate name changes to green-related names only for companies not involved in green activities at the time of the announcement. However, over an extended period of time, companies unrelated to green activities experience substantial negative abnormal returns if they fail to align their operational focus with the new name after the change.

Keywords: Corporate Social Responsibility, Sustainable Investments, Greenwashing, Corporate Name Change

JEL Classification: M14, G24, G11

Suggested Citation

Latino, Carmelo, Surfing the Green Wave: What’s in a “Green” Name Change? (December 19, 2023). SAFE Working Paper No. 410, Available at SSRN: or

Carmelo Latino (Contact Author)

Leibniz Institute for Financial Research SAFE ( email )

Theodor-W.-Adorno-Platz 3
Frankfurt am Main, 60323

Do you have negative results from your research you’d like to share?

Paper statistics

Abstract Views
PlumX Metrics