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A comparison of corporate governance and firm performance in developing (Malaysia) and developed (Australia) financial markets

Rashid, Kashif (2008) A comparison of corporate governance and firm performance in developing (Malaysia) and developed (Australia) financial markets. PhD thesis, Victoria University.

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Abstract

Issues and Significance: It is widely believed that good corporate governance is an important factor in improving the value of a firm in both developing and developed financial markets. However, the relationship between corporate governance and the value of a firm (the CGVF relationship) differs in developing and developed financial markets due to disparate corporate governance structures in these markets resulting from the dissimilar social, economic and regulatory conditions in these countries. There is a need to understand the differences which affect the value of a firm for academic investigations, financial and management practices and public regulation of markets and corporations. Existing Literature and Limitations: The existing literature on how good corporate governance contributes to improving the value of a firm is not well developed and has several limitations. No single research thus far, has undertaken a comprehensive study of the differences in the relationship between the level of corporate governance sophistication of the firm and its contribution to firm value. In the context of developing markets the relationships between corporate governance and the value of a firm are not defined properly and these relationships are not adequately tested by incorporating the relevant factors affecting them. Furthermore, comparative analyses of the relevance of different management theories (such as agency theory, stewardship theory, etc.) in shedding light on the nature and process of the CGVF relationships in developing and developed markets have not been reported in literature. Therefore, there is a need to redefine and properly analyse CGVF relationships by incorporating the factors relevant for a firm operating in developing and developed financial markets. Objectives of the Study: To help overcome the limitations of the existing literature, this study develops separate models for the CGVF relationships for developed and developing markets keeping in mind the differences between these markets; defines the concept of corporate governance and the value of a firm suitable for developing and developed financial markets; highlights the differences in the process by which corporate governance affects the value of a firm in developing and developed financial markets; and states the implications of different management theories in explaining the differences in CGVF relationships in these markets. Methodology and Data: Two typical financial markets, Australia (developed) and Malaysia (developing) are selected for the present study. The panel data is collected from 2000 to 2003 for Tobin’s Q, price to book value ratio, market capitalisation, gearing ratio, return on total assets, shareholder’s concentration (agency cost), CEO duality, board size, and judicial and regulatory authority efficiency. Multifactor corporate governance and the value of a firm (CGVF) models relevant for developed and developing markets are constructed and econometric analyses are performed to test the relationship between corporate governance instruments and the value of a firm. Incremental tests are also carried out to see the importance of individual variables in the model for developing and developed financial markets. In addition, tests for the complementarities of corporate governance instruments in affecting the value of a firm are also performed. Results and Implications of CGVF Relationships The results of the corporate governance model for developing, developed and crossmarket analysis suggest a positive relationship between corporate governance and the value of a firm. The results on the relationship between the value of a firm and corporate governance mechanism in the developed market suggest a negative relationship between debt and the value of a firm. The result confirms agency theory, as managers do not handle the debt properly. Also, there is a negative relationship between the value of a firm and a larger board, further confirming agency theory. On the contrary, control variables such as market capitalisation and the price to book value ratio have a positive relationship with the value of a firm in this market. The managers are stewards in this case and are inclined to support the interests of the shareholders thereby supporting stewardship theory. Similarly, the results on the relationship between corporate governance and the value of a firm in the developing financial market suggest a negative relationship between shareholder concentration and the value of a firm. The results of this model confirm agency theory where the majority shareholders, as agents, are involved in empire building. Similarly, control variables such as return on total assets, market capitalisation and price to book value ratio have a positive relationship with the value of a firm in the developing financial market. The results support stewardship theory. Finally, the bigger board size has a positive relationship with the value of a firm in the developing financial market. The results on the cross-market analysis show that higher debt and inefficient regulatory authority have a negative relationship with the value of a firm. There is an agency cost involved in handling debt. Furthermore, the inefficient regulatory authority deteriorates the value of a firm supporting agency theory. On the contrary, control variables such as return on total assets and price to book value ratio have a positive relationship with the value of a firm in both developed and developing financial markets, supporting stewardship theory. The incremental regression shows that price to book value ratio is the most significant factor in improving the value of a firm in all the CGVF models. The tests of complementarities in the cross-market analysis suggest that board size improves the marginal benefit of CEO duality. Similarly, the regulatory regime encourages an independent CEO to improve the value of a firm. Finally, the value of a firm in a developing market is a broad concept and also incorporates the social value in addition to the monetary value of a firm. The difference in the results for developing and developed markets is due to the different social, regulatory and corporate governance systems in their financial markets. Due to these variations in the selected financial markets, the process by which the value of a firm is affected is also different. Conclusion: In light of the above findings, the study has highlighted the role of corporate governance in effective utilisation of assets to improve the value of a firm. The role of the board and regulatory authority is important in disciplining the CEO and majority shareholders in the financial markets. A bigger board creates value for shareholders in developing financial markets. On the contrary, a smaller board and less debt create value in developed financial markets. The current study makes an original contribution by suggesting that there is a positive relationship between corporate governance and the value of a firm in both developing and developed markets, although, the nature of this relationship differs due to differences in the characteristics of developing and developed markets. The divergence in the social, economic and organisational aspects of these markets makes the relevance of various organisational and management theories in explaining the CGVF relationships different as well. These insights in explaining the CGVF relationships are useful for academic understanding and business and public policy formulations.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD thesis)
Uncontrolled Keywords: corporate governance, performance, firms, financial markets, Malaysia, Australia
Subjects: RFCD Classification > 340000 Economics
Faculty/School/Research Centre/Department > Centre for Strategic Economic Studies (CSES)
RFCD Classification > 350000 Commerce, Management, Tourism and Services
Depositing User: Ms Lyn Wade
Date Deposited: 22 Oct 2008 04:02
Last Modified: 23 May 2013 16:40
URI: http://vuir.vu.edu.au/id/eprint/1457
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