Included Studies

Industrial accidents

High Profile

Three Mile Island

Abstract: n.a.

Abstract: n.a.


Abstract: U.S. public electric-utility stock price reactions to the Chernobyl nuclear-power accident are investigated. Results indicate that utility shareholders earned, on average, significant negative abnormal returns during the 20-day period immediately following the accident. Firms using nuclear power experienced greater losses than did nonnuclear firms. These findings are consistent with those of previous studies on Three Mile Island. However, our results indicate no significant changes in systematic risk, total risk, or market risk as a result of the Chernobyl accident.

Valdez spill

Abstract: This study examines the effects of the March 24, 1989 grounding of the tanker Exxon Valdez on the equity return levels of several major oil companies. Using the Multivariate Regression model (MVRM) methodology, the results indicate that the equity prices of the effected firms immediately and fully reflected the relevant information associated with the accident. Additionally, the evidence reveals that the market was able to discriminate among the oil companies based on their levels of exposure to the Trans-Alaska Pipeline. The lack of significant abnormal equity price changes for those firms which were, at most, only marginally affected by the accident suggests that the market did not view the disaster as having industry-wide repercussions.

Abstract: n.a.


Abstract: This paper discusses appropriate methodology for measuring the effect of an event on the value of a firm’s equity. The key points are (1) cumulative abnormal returns do not measure the effect of an event on firm value if there are dividends during the event window; (2) it is generally appropriate to use pre-event parameters of the return-generating process even if the event alters the parameters during the event window; and (3) controlling for factors other than the return on the market portfolio improves the power of the estimation. The formula for the effect of an event on the value of a firm when there are dividends during the event window is developed and applied to a study of the effect of the Bhopal disaster on the value of Union Carbide.

Abstract: Union Carbide’s chemical leak in Bhopal, India during December 1984 resulted in approximately 4,000 deaths and 200,000 injuries. This study examines the market reaction of chemical firms other than Union Carbide to this catastrophe. Evidence indicates that a significant negative intra-industry reaction occurred. However, firms with more extensive environmental disclosures in their financial report prior to the chemical leak experienced a less negative reaction than firms with less extensive disclosures. This result suggests that investors interpreted such disclosures as a positive sign of the firm managing its exposure to future regulatory costs.

Abstract: This study examines the returns of Union Carbide and other chemical producers around the time of the Bhopal disaster. As might be anticipated, there were significant contagion effects. These effects were, however, economically small. There is also some evidence of over-reaction effect—larger initial losses moderated by later offsetting gains. For the firms other than Union Carbide, the later gains completely offset the initial losses.


Abstract: This study examines the stock market response to the Buncefield oil depot explosion in 2005. Like previous studies on technological disasters, we find an adverse effect on security prices. However, average abnormal return is only −0.58% for the four oil firms involved in the accident; that is, the explosion did not throw shareholders into panic selling.

Placer Dome

Abstract: An environmental accident at a Placer Dome mine triggered a contagion effect across the Canadian mining industry. The decline in equity prices was moderated by prior disclosure of a high-level commitment to environmental management. Investors appear to interpret this information as a signal of expertise in the management of environmental risks and costs. The same companies are positioned to make the most credible financial disclosures about environmental management, and yet the evidence suggests that financial disclosures themselves have a negative impact on company value. There may be a miscommunication between investors and analysts on the one hand and mining company executives on the other, which could explain why mining company managers report their companies’ shares are undervalued.


Abstract: This event study investigates the impact of the Japanese nuclear disaster in Fukushima-Daiichi on the daily stock prices of French, German, Japanese, and U.S. nuclear utility and alternative energy firms. Hypotheses regarding the (cumulative) abnormal returns based on a three-factor model are analyzed through joint tests by multivariate regression models and bootstrapping. Our results show significant abnormal returns for Japanese nuclear utility firms during the one-week event window and the subsequent four-week post-event window. Furthermore, while French and German nuclear utility and alternative energy stocks exhibit significant abnormal returns during the event window, we cannot confirm abnormal returns for U.S. stocks.

The purpose of this study is to investigate the effect of the accident at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power station, which is owned by Tokyo Electric Power Co. (TEPCO), on the stock prices of the other electric power utilities in Japan. Because the other utilities were not directly damaged by the Fukushima nuclear accident, their stock price responses should reflect the change in investor perceptions on risk and return associated with nuclear power generation. Our first finding is that the stock prices of utilities that own nuclear power plants declined more sharply after the accident than did the stock prices of other electric power utilities. In contrast, investors did not seem to care about the risk that may arise from the use of the same type of nuclear power reactors as those at the Fukushima Daiichi station. We also observe an increase of both systematic and total risks in the post-Fukushima period, indicating that negative market reactions are not merely caused by one-time losses but by structural changes in society and regulation that could increase the costs of operating a nuclear power plant.

Abstract: This article analyses how policy changes affect shareholder wealth by exploiting the unexpected German reaction to the Japanese nuclear disaster. Event study results show that energy companies’ shareholder wealth was affected by the policy reaction and not by the disaster.

Abstract: This study analyzes how the stock market returns, the factor loadings from the Carhart (1997) 4-factor model, and the idiosyncratic volatility of shares in energy firms have been affected by the Fukushima nuclear accident. Unlike existing studies, which provide evidence of a wealth transfer from nuclear to renewable energy firms for specific countries, we use an international sample and investigate whether changes in the regulatory environment and the firm-specific commitment to nuclear and renewable energies correlate with the capital market’s reactions to the Fukushima Daiichi accident. Our findings suggest that the more a firm relies on nuclear power, the more its share price declined after the accident. A commitment to renewable energies does not prevent declines in share prices but significantly helps to reduce the increase in market beta that is associated with this event. Nuclear energy firms domiciled in countries with a higher number of regulatory interventions that were triggered by the catastrophe have lower abnormal returns than those that are domiciled elsewhere. However, as a cross-sectional analysis reveals, a stronger commitment to nuclear power is the main driver for negative stock market returns. Furthermore, nuclear energy firms domiciled in countries with stronger regulatory shifts away from nuclear energy experience significant increases in market beta and the book-to-market equity factor loading according to the Carhart (1997) 4-factor model. We conclude that capital market participants are able to differentiate between the affectedness of firms with respect to their product portfolio. Energy firms could prevent increases in market beta due to catastrophes such as the Fukushima Daiichi accident by shifting some of their energy production from nuclear to renewable or other sources.

Deep Water Horizon

Abstract: The shares of BP plc and its subcontractors were rocked when the financial markets discovered the true impact of the Deepwater Horizon explosion as reported in the Wall Street Journal on 22 April 2010. While we track the impact of the disaster on share prices of the key participants, perhaps the most damaging response to the disaster was the introduction of the Gulf oil exploration moratorium on deep water drilling. We find that this adversely affected a range of firms in the oil and gas industry, extending the economic impact of the disaster well beyond BP plc and its subcontractors.

Abstract: This paper examines the stock market reaction to the British Petroleum oil spill on April 20, 2010. This event study looks at different sectors that may be affected by the oil spill. It finds that different industries do not have significant abnormal returns, with two exceptions. First, utilities companies have a very small positive abnormal return for a short period of time after the incident. Second, when only looking at BP’s direct competitors, there is a statistically significant negative abnormal return, implying that BP’s competitors are punished for BP’s mishap.

Abstract: We use the BP, PLC oil spill to provide new evidence regarding the consequences of and motivations for environmental disclosures. We find that among oil and gas firms drilling in U.S. waters, those with greater environmental disclosure suffered smaller negative shareholder wealth effects following the spill. This suggests that shareholders believed firms with more environmental disclosures were better prepared to address future environmental regulations and less likely to experience similar environmental incidents. We also document an increase in environmental disclosure, specifically disclosures of disaster readiness plans, in the year following the spill. Firms with poorer past environmental performance were more likely to increase disaster readiness plan disclosures. The increased disclosure by the poor pre-spill environmental performers is not entirely window dressing, as their post-spill environmental performance improved. The totality of our evidence is most consistent with the voluntary disclosure theory of environmental disclosure.


Abstract: Current proposals to reform regulation of the commercial nuclear power industry ignore the potential of financial market sanctions on poor reactor management. This paper examines investor reaction to the automatic shutdowns following equipment failures at nuclear power plants from 1978 to 1985. Compared with a portfolio of nuclear utilities, the daily return to common equity of the owner of a failed reactor dropped by 0.24 percent after two trading days but increased by 0.24 percent four trading days later. Investors are averse to reactor failures but correct initial negative responses once they learn that the reactor is not damaged.

Abstract: In this paper, we examine the stock market reaction to industrial disasters. We consider an original sample of 64 explosions in chemical plants and refineries worldwide over the period 1990–2005. A quarter of the accidents resulted in a toxic release, and half of them caused at least one death or serious injury. On average, petrochemical firms in our sample experience a drop in their market value of 1.3% over the two days immediately following the disaster. Using multivariate analysis, we show that this loss is significantly related to the seriousness of the accident as measured by the number of casualties and by chemical pollution: each casualty corresponds to a loss of $164 million and a toxic release to a loss of $1 billion.

Abstract: We analyze the stock market reaction to 161 major environmental and non-environmental accidents, reported on the front page of the New York Times for half a century. To determine if the market induces a real deterrence effect, we extend the event windows up to one year. On average, the market reacts negatively and enduringly to the announcement of an accident. However, this average effect is largely driven by the airline industry and by government interventions. The estimated average compounded abnormal return following environmental accidents does not differ from zero after one year. This does not exclude, in severe events affecting large firms, huge losses in equity value, but the significant negative cumulative abnormal returns estimated immediately after an environmental accident in previous studies do not persist. Our results suggest that in a market driven by institutional investors, the deterrence effect is likely to be weak.

Abstract: The aim of this paper is to isolate the corporate reputational risk faced by US oil and gas companies—as listed on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE)—after recent oil spill disasters. For this purpose, we have conducted a standard short-horizon daily event study analysis aimed at the calibration of the financial perceptions caused by these environmental episodes between 2005 and 2011, and the drop effect on the market value of the firms analyzed. We not only find significant negative impact on the stock prices of the companies analyzed but also significant cumulative negative abnormal returns (CAR) around the accidental spillages, especially for the longest event windows. Corporate reputational risk is also identified and even measured by adjusting abnormal returns by a certain loss ratio. A new metric, CAR(Rep), is then proposed to disentangle operational losses and the reputational damage derived from such negative financial perceptions.

Abstract: This paper examines the relationship between Corporate Social Responsibility and stock market performance. To examine this relationship the “event-study” methodology is utilised to examine five events, two from the oil industry (BP and Exxon oil spills) and three from the banking industry (HSBC – money laundering; Barclays and Royal Bank of Scotland – Libor scandal). Results suggest that, apart from the HSBC money laundering event, all other events appear to have a significant effect on stock market performance as the shares of the firms involved tend to exhibit significant negative average abnormal returns during the period which followed the event. We also find some differences regarding the time-frame of the effect, since for some events it took more time to get into “full swing” and lasted longer.

Abstract: Despite recent major chemical process accidents in Japan, the top management teams of firms still avoid taking costly risk reduction measures because of their low perceived impact on firm performance. The disclosure of information on accident risks might motivate managers to enhance workplace safety because of the subsequent evaluation of firms by investors in stock markets. If the disclosed risk information is newly available for investors, firms with a high risk of accidents would receive a poor evaluation by stock markets and thus managers would take risk reduction measures to prevent stock prices from declining. In this study, we conduct an event study analysis to examine whether accident risk information is already reflected in stock prices, using data on the Japanese chemical industry. The results of our event study show that the estimated cumulative average abnormal returns of firms’ stocks are significantly negative after severe accidents actually occurred. This finding implies that risk information is not already reflected in the stock prices of Japanese chemical firms and that the disclosure of accident risk information has the potential to motivate the top management teams of firms to reduce their firms’ accident risk.

Abstract: In the past decades, Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) has attracted increasing attention, with Corporate Environmental Responsibility (CER or Environmental CSR) playing an ever important role. This paper aims to study whether and how Chinese shareholders are sensitive to the disclosure of environmental violations. Specifically, the issue is measured by the performance of the Chinese stock market. In order to answer this question, the authors conduct a two-dimensional “environment-as-a-resource” framework, which assumes that the pressure on stock price after an environmental violation is from both externalities and internalities. The external pressure comes from environmental regulations, media attention, customer sensitivity and so on. The internal pressure is rooted in firm level actions, for example, previous pollution control and previous CSR performance. The paper starts by addressing theories of corporate social responsibility, corporate environmental management and market value management, followed by the advancement of foreign and domestic research. Then, based on the events in the Shanghai and Shenzhen stock exchanges from 2002 to 2014, the authors calculate the events’ cumulative abnormal return. The explanatory factors in the regression model include external impacts of time trend and media attention; together with internal impacts of previous pollution situations and CSR performance. Complementing the notion of “environment-as-a-resource”, the regression results reveal that, facing an environmental violation, Chinese shareholders react negatively. The negative reaction becomes weaker as time goes by, and is stronger in the years with heavier media environmental attention. Furthermore, some policy suggestions are proposed in light of the current CSR implementations by Chinese companies: 1) Strengthen the government’s environmental scrutiny management to help the market punish environmental violators. 2) Encourage environmental accounting and environmental auditing for public companies. 3) Build up a broad environmental information platform comprising of interactions between the government, corporations and media. 4) Cultivate environmental awareness of company managers so it becomes worthy to invest in environment resources and gain better awareness of environmental responsibility.

Abstract: The present work investigates the impact of negative events on supply chain partners. Through a contextualised discussion of the literature on supply chains and on the efficient market hypothesis, it is proposed that negative events negatively impact the market value of suppliers and customers. Following an exploratory approach, 307 companies (21 source companies, 158 suppliers and 128 customers) comprehending 20 cases of environmental disaster, corporate social irresponsibility, operational failure, corporate fraud and corruption were analysed. Results show that in 12 out of the 20 cases investigated supply chain partners indeed had their market value penalised, encompassing, to a greater or lesser degree, all five categories of cases considered. Yet, while both suppliers and customers absorbed the outcomes of negative events, suppliers seem to be at greater risk of sustaining such losses. Likewise, cases in which the source companies were also negatively affected seem to be slightly more prone to cause losses among suppliers and customers. In this sense, the concept of supply chain contamination is coined to address the observed outcomes. The study offers new insights into the applicability of the efficient market hypothesis and contributes to the assessment of the dissemination of negative events in supply chains, a theme that, despite its potential detrimental consequences for firms and stakeholders, has not yet been sufficiently treated in the Management literature.

Abstract: We examine firms listed on the Shanghai/Shenzhen Stock Exchange to investigate stock market reactions to 294 Chinese manufacturing firms involved in 618 environmental incidents between 2006 and 2013. Through our event studies,we find empirical evidence of a significantly negative stock market reaction to announcements of environmental incidents. Our empirical analysis reveals that Chinese firms with a higher government share (of ownership) and recognition of social responsibility tend to be less affected by such incidents; however, Chinese firms with stronger personal political ties (i.e., top management teams or board members with concurrent or prior government appointments) are actually affected more when environmental incidents occur. Moreover, environmental incidents caused by Chinese firms can have a significantly negative impact on the market value of their overseas customers.

Abstract: The automotive sector must meet strict regulations to increase mobility while reducing emissions to demonstrate environmental stewardship. Trust in the promise of a sustainable Fahrvergnügen was broken with recent scandals like Dieselgate denting the confidence of regulators and consumers. Overpromising on sustainable innovative technology resulted in unethical behavior, deceit, and failure to meet promised standards. We consider to what extent societal disapproval was evident in the stock market reaction to these events. We sampled 41 announcements (1984 to 2016) and observed a mean stock market reaction of -1.01%. There was no difference in the stock reaction in firms failing governmental vs. voluntary standards and more negative reactions for events following Dieselgate or when compensation was offered. The severity of the reaction to unethical misuse of environmental credentials should encourage maintaining promised environmental performances as a macromarketing strategy.

Abstract: We examine the stock market reaction to natural and man-made disasters in potash mines. We use a sample of 44 mining accidents worldwide over the period 1995-2016. A quarter of the accidents were the result of a natural disaster, such as flooding, that often ended in the closure of the potash mine. The remaining accidents were caused mainly by human error, and almost 50% were work accidents often associated with serious injury or death. On average, mining firms experience a drop in their market value of 0.89% on the day of a disaster. However, we observe a significantly stronger response of the stock market to natural events. Indeed, the regression analysis confirms that the firm’s market loss is significantly related to the seriousness of the accident. On the other hand, we do not find any other micro- or macro-level factors that determine the stock market reaction following a disaster.

Environmental Regulation

Public Disclosures

Toxic Release Investory

Abstract: This study investigates whether pollution data released by the EPA in the June 1989 Toxics Release Inventory (TRI) were « news » to journalists and investors. The results indicate that the higher pollution figures (such as air emissions or offsite shipments of toxic waste) were in a firm′s TRI reports, the more likely print journalists were to write about the firm′s toxic releases. Investors also found this pollution information of interest, since nearly three quarters of the TRI pollution releases came from publicly held companies. Stockholders in firms reporting TRI pollution figures experienced negative, statistically significant abnormal returns upon the first release of the information. These abnormal returns translated into an average loss of $4.1 million in stock value for TRI firms on the day the pollution figures were first released.

Abstract: There is growing academic and policy-level interest in the use of information as quasi-regulatory mechanisms, such as toxic release inventory (TRI) and “green labels.” Mandatory disclosure requirements have been touted as “market-based incentives” that may affect firm behavior. We provide new evidence on the effectiveness of disclosure requirements by examining firm behavior in response to disclosures of TRI emissions. We find that firms with the largest stock price decline on the day this information became public subsequently reduced emissions more than their industry peers. This is consistent with the view that financial markets may provide strong incentives for firms to change their environmental behavior.

Abstract: This paper attempts to look at the effectiveness of public provision of pollution information in providing incentives for firms to control pollution. This is achieved by examining the effect of release of pollution information on the market value of firms. The paper conducts a value event study using the U.S Environmental Protection Agency’s Toxic Release Inventory Program as the basis for its analysis. The paper uses a Seemingly Unrelated Regressions (SUR) approach with a dummy for the event date to conduct this value event study. The advantage of using the SUR approach as opposed to methods used in similar studies done before is that it explicitly incorporates both the contemporaneous correlation of returns and the inter-temporal correlation of the estimated abnormal returns when testing the null hypothesis that the event has no impact. We conclude that there are significant negative abnormal returns on the day of the release of the pollution information for all the seven releases put together. But, there are no significant negative abnormal returns for each of the seven releases when we incorporate the contemporaneous correlation of the returns and inter-temporal correlation of the estimated abnormal returns. In addition, this negative effect peters away as the length of the event period is extended to include the four days after the release of the information as well.

Abstract: This study examines investor reactions to the repeated public disclosure of environmental information about firms in the chemical industry and the effectiveness of this information as a decentralized mechanism for deterring their pollution. By allowing investors to benchmark the performance of firms, repeated provision of the Toxics Release Inventory led firms to incur statistically significant negative stock market returns during the one-day period following the disclosure of that information in the years 1990–1994. These losses had a significant negative impact on subsequent on-site toxic releases and a significant positive impact on wastes transferred off site, but their impact on total toxic wastes generated by these firms is negligible.

Abstract: When public benefits of environmentally friendly practices are well understood, there is anecdotal evidence that suggests that firms that follow such practices also receive private benefits. The paper investigates the effect of voluntary pollution prevention activity in creating private value for the firm. Our sample consists of 635 publicly traded companies for which we have pollution related financial data. Using event study methodology, we examine the announcement effects accompanying the Toxics Release Inventory report for the firms in our sample. We incorporate an expectations model and then examine how firms perform when they depart from expectations. Our analysis provides some evidence that firms that fail to undertake environmental improvements see a decline in their market value. However, firms that exceed their expected level of activity experience insignificant market impacts.

Abstract: Unlike previous US environmental regulations, the Toxics Release Inventory (TRI), passed into law in 1986, focused on using information as a tool for reducing pollution. As noted by Konar and Cohen [Journal of Environmental Economics and Management 32 (1997) 109], if investors cared enough about the pollution performance information required under the enactment to punish bad performers, firms would have a market-based incentive to reduce toxic emissions. However, legitimacy theorists suggest that corporations may use largely voluntary financial report environmental disclosures to offset or mitigate the negative aspects of other information or actions. Accordingly, these disclosures could reduce the market effect of the TRI program. This study examines the market reaction to the unexpected proposal by President George Bush in June of 1989 for revisions in the Clean Air Act to identify whether TRI information and 10-K report environmental disclosures had an impact. Based on a sample of 112 firms, we find that companies with worse pollution performance (higher levels of size-adjusted toxic releases into the air) suffered more negative market reactions than companies with better performance. However, companies with less extensive environmental disclosures in their 10-K reports suffered more negative market reactions than companies with more extensive disclosure. These results suggest that, while the TRI information may be inducing market effects that could in turn work as a quasi-regulatory device, financial report environmental disclosure reduces its impact. If concern about the environment is important, therefore, it appears that environmental disclosure under a largely voluntary regime is inadequate.

Abstract: I investigate whether, as is commonly believed — and if so how — firm disclosure of so-called « toxic » releases, required since 1987 by the federal « Toxics Release Inventory (« TRI »), has brought about the reductions in toxic releases that have occurred since that time. Existing literature, consisting principally of event studies of stock market returns, suggest that dirty firms experience abnormal negative returns. Using a micro-level data set that links TRI releases to plant level Census data for petroleum refineries, I study plant-level behavior, exploiting state variation in toxics regulations, and exploring the relationship between TRI releases and concomitant regulation of non-toxic pollutants. I find that, although TRI induced public disclosure may have contributed to the decline in reported toxic releases, that alone has not been the cause of those reductions: the evidence is strong that changes in toxic emission intensity are a byproduct of more traditional command and control regulation of emissions of non-toxic pollutants. I find that (1) since 1987, refineries have become substantially cleaner in terms of over-all toxic releases; (2) the clean-up has not occurred through substitution away from TRI listed substances as inputs or alteration in the mix of outputs; and (3) refineries in states with more stringent supplemental regulation of toxics (e.g. with specific state-wide goals for toxic reductions) have significantly lower toxic emission intensity levels than refineries in other states. I find also that (4) TRI air releases are highly correlated with levels of criteria air pollution; (5) both toxic pollution levels and intensity fall with increases in pollution abatement (operating and maintenance) expenditures for non-toxic air pollution; and (6) TRI air releases are affected by being in more stringent regulatory regions for the criteria air pollutants. Finally, I link my data-set with CRSP data to re-evaluate the effect of TRI reporting on company stock market valuation, correcting for a methodological shortcoming (stemming from the fact that all reporting firms face a common event window) of prior event studies of the impact of the TRI. Correcting for that shortcoming, I find that (7) the evidence of negative abnormal returns around TRI reporting dates for petroleum companies is not significant. My findings suggest that the most probable mechanism through which TRI reporting may induce firms to clean up is local and state governmental use of TRI disclosures. They suggest also not only that the perceived effectiveness of TRI regulation has been overstated, but perhaps more importantly that the benefits of command and control regulation of non-toxic pollutants have been underestimated.

List of non-compliant

Abstract: Over the last ten years, large corporations have significantly increased their voluntary disclosures of socially-oriented information in annual reports. External organizations such as the Council on Economic Priorities (CEP) also have been active in producing information bearing on firms’ social performances-particularly with respect to pollution control. This study investigates whether security price movements are associated with the release of externally produced information about companies’ performances in the pollution-control area-information which has attributes of consistency and comparability not typically found in voluntarily reported, socially-oriented data. Specifically, the study investigates security price movements associated with the release of eight major studies conducted by the CEP of firms’ environmental performances in four industries. The observed price movements are consistent with changes in investors’ perceptions of the probability distributions of future cash flows of the sample firms at the times of release of the CEP studies. The reported results also are consistent with investors using the information released by the CEP to discriminate between companies with different pollution-control performance records.

Abstract: It has been observed that upon trading-off the costs and benefits of pollution control, profit-maximizing firms may choose not to invest their resources in pollution abatement since the expected penalty imposed by regulators falls considerably short of the investment cost. Regulators have recently embarked on a deliberate strategy to release information to markets (investors and consumers) regarding firms’ environmental performance in order to enhance incentives for pollution control. In this paper, we analyze the role that capital markets may play to create such incentives. Evidence drawn from American and Canadian studies indicates that capital markets react to the release of information, and that large polluters are affected more significantly by such release than smaller polluters. This result appears to be a function of the regulator’s willingness to undertake strong enforcement actions as well as the possibility for capital markets to rank and compare firms with respect to their environmental performance.

Abstract: A growing body of research points to the fact that capital markets react to environmental news and thus create incentives for pollution control in both developed and emerging market economies. In this paper, we conduct an event study to examine the impact of environmental rating of large pulp and paper, auto, and chlor alkali firms on their stock prices. We find that the market generally penalizes environmentally unfriendly behaviour in that announcement of weak environmental performance by firms leads to negative abnormal returns of up to 30%. A positive correlation is found between abnormal returns to a firm’s stock and the level of its environmental performance. These findings should be viewed as further evidence of the important role that capital markets could play in environmental management, particularly in developing countries where environmental monitoring and enforcement are weak.

Abstract: For almost 20 years, the Ministry of Environment of the Republic of Korea has published on a monthly basis a list of enterprises which fail to comply with national environmental laws and regulations. In this paper, we examine the reaction of investors to the publication of these lists, and show that enterprises appearing on these lists have experienced a significant decline in their market valuation.


Abstract: This study adds to the empirical evidence supporting a significant connection between ethics and profitability by examining the connection between published reports of unethical behavior—in terms of environmental pollution—by publicly traded U.S. and multinational firms and the performance of their stock. Using reports of environmental pollution—air, or water pollution or environmental cleanup—published in the Wall Street Journal from 1989 to 1993, the analysis shows that the actual stock performance for those companies was lower than the expected market adjusted returns. Unethical conduct by firms which is discovered and publicized does impact on the shareholders by lowering the value of their stock for an appreciable period of time. Whatever their views on whether ethical behavior is profitable, managers should be able to see a definite connection between unethical behavior and the worth of their firm’s stock. Stockholders, the press and regulators should find this information important in pressing for greater corporate and managerial accountability.

Abstract: The aim of this paper is to examine the effectiveness of the first European Pollution Emissions Register (EPER), a regulatory instrument based on the publication of the environmental performance of firms exceeding specified pollution limits. The Multivariate Regression Model (MVRM) is applied to capture the disciplinary effect of the EPER. So, we first perform an analysis to determine whether the publication of the EPER has a negative effect on the market value of the listed firms. Secondly, we consider the possibility of the publication of the EPER affecting the market value of firms which could be included in the EPER but are not because their emissions do not exceed the specified pollution limits. Finally, we prepare an index to compare the environmental results of the firms and analyse whether the consequences of publishing the EPER are worse for firms with high relative pollution records.

Abstract: We study how the stock market in China responds to announcements by an environmental risk index and find that China’s stock market penalizes firms associated with unfavourable environmental news if the information is provided directly to investors in a manner that is easily understood. We also find that the negative impact on stock prices fades after multiple disclosures of the same information.

For the RCRA and Superfund Acts, the publicly announced desired effects are the protection of the public and natural resources from, and ultimate cleanup of, hazardous waste materials. If the regulations are working, firms are being deterred from illegal disposal of wastes. If not, the regulations are providing only illusions of improved safety, while the public actually faces a never ending process of site discovery and cleanup. While not addressed in previous empirical literature, the deterrent effects of the RCRA and Superfund Acts are the focus of this paper. The deterrent effects of the RCRA and Superfund Acts stem from the potential for suits against responsible parties seeking an end to violations, site cleanup, and reimbursement for expenditures and damages. This paper measures the impact of hazardous waste mismanagement lawsuits on stockholder returns. Specifically, the standard event-study method is used to directly measure the abnormal losses suffered by stockholders associated with lawsuit filings and settlements between 1977 and 1986.

Abstract: n.a.

Abstract: As corporate concern regarding environmental issues grows, recent studies have debated the stock market’s role as an enforcer of environmental regulation. We examine stock market reactions to EPA judicial actions on a sample of publicly traded firms from 1972–91. Specifically, we find that (a) there is a significant decline of 0.43% in violator firm value during the week of settlement; (b) the market penalty is unrelated to fine size, (c) more pronounced for citations under the Clean Air Act, (d) for repeat violators, and (e) for more recent EPA actions. These stock market reactions appear to reinforce the intent of EPA enforcement efforts.

Abstract: This paper examines lawsuits in which at least one side, plaintiff or defendant, is a corporation. We provide evidence on the relative frequency of the legal issues involved and on the incidence of suits according to whether the other party is another firm, a governmente entity, or a noncorporate private entity. To explore the direct and indirect costs and benefits to firms in volved in different types of legal disputes, we examine the stock market reaction to filing and settlement announcements. We find that the characteristics of the suit, such as the legal issue and type of opponent and firm characteristics such as firm size and proximity to bankruptcy have power to explain cross-sectional variation in these wealth effects.

Abstract: We investigate the effect of EPA pollution control enforcement activities and firm response strategies on stockholders’ wealth. We find that the market reacts negatively upon learning that the firm has been targeted, and that losing a contest with the EPA is very costly to stockholders. Apparently firms are not expected to recover a significant part of pollution control costs from their customers. Somewhat surprisingly, losses are only weakly related to the presence of (unregulated) foreign competition, suggesting that untargeted domestic competitors may restrain cost recovery. Our analysis also indicates that firms may benefit by cooperating with the EPA; i.e., compliant strategies reduce (but don’t avoid) wealth losses. The losses of firms that settle are about 40% less than those of firms that fight and lose, and we find no evidence of value gains for firms that fight and win.

Abstract: This paper examines the sizes and determinants of fines, damage awards, remediation costs, and market value losses imposed on companies that violate environmental laws. We find that legal penalties are not significantly related to firm size, indicating no support for views that large companies face unusually small legal penalties. In fact, we can explain very little of the cross-sectional variation in legal penalties, lending support to arguments that such penalties are highly variable and unpredictable. On average, firms violating environmental laws suffer statistically significant losses in the market value of firm equity. The losses are of similar magnitude to the legal penalties imposed, indicating that legal penalties, and not reputational losses, are most important in disciplining and deterring environmental violations.

Recent literature on optimal sanctions for corporations has focused on coordination and refinement of criminal, civil, and market-based sanctions. This paper contributes to emerging evidence on the reputational penalties that public corporations pay for federal crimes. First, it is shown that offenses harming only private parties and not government tend to be addressed through civil or market-based and not criminal sanctions. Second, when criminal allegations do arise, they are often surrounded by reports of terminated or suspended customer relationships and of management or employee turnover. These reports are more frequent if damaged parties are customers, as in fraud, than if they are third parties, as in environmental crime, and if stock prices decline significantly at the first news of crime. All of these features are consistent with characterizations of reputational penalties found in the literature. Findings on the nonatomistic nature of damaged parties suggest directions for future research.

Abstract: It is said that firms in developing countries do not have incentives to invest in pollution control because of weak implementation of environmental regulations. This argument assumes that the regulator is the only agent that can create incentives for pollution control, and ignores that capital markets, if properly informed, may provide the appropriate financial and reputational incentives. We show that capital markets in Argentina, Chile, Mexico, and the Philippines do react to announcements of environmental events, such as those of superior environmental performance or citizens’ complaints. A policy implication is that environmental regulators in developing countries may explicitly harness those market forces by introducing structured programs of information release pertaining to firms’ environmental performance: public disclosure mechanisms in developing countries may be a useful model to consider given limited government enforcement resources.

Abstract: This paper examines the sizes of the fines, damage awards, remediation costs, and market value losses imposed on companies that violate environmental regulations. Firms violating environmental laws suffer statistically significant losses in the market value of firm equity. The losses, however, are of similar magnitudes to the legal penalties imposed; and in the cross section, the market value loss is related to the size of the legal penalty. Thus, environmental violations are disciplined largely through legal and regulatory penalties, not through reputational penalties.

Abstract: This paper, we employ the event study methodology to examine shareholder wealth consequences of corporate environmental lawsuits filed in the US Circuit Courts from 1980 to 2001. We find that stocks of defendant firms experience significant negative abnormal returns around the lawsuit filing dates. When the plaintiffs are government entities, the abnormal returns of the defendant stocks are significantly negative. On the other hand, when the plaintiffs are individuals or nonpublic business entities, the abnormal returns are statistically insignificant. When lawsuits are filed under EPA’s superfund statute, defendant firms experience significant loss in equity value. For shareholders of the average firm in our sample, the empirical evidence suggests that it does not pay to pollute if the firm is sued.

Abstract: n.a.

Abstract: Using a novel sample of 83,260 lawsuits filed in US Federal District courts, we extend the results of prior studies investigating market value and reputational losses due to corporate misconduct. We examine alternative explanations for the loss in market value, such as media coverage, the expectation of subsequent litigation, and the defendant’s willingness to settle, in addition to previously documented factors. Our results suggest that with the exception of securities litigation, this loss in market value can be attributed to these alternative explanations rather than to reputational consequences. This finding is confirmed by several indirect measures of reputation loss.

Changes in policy


Abstract: Environmental issues have attracted national attention and are becoming a focus at many jirms. This paper examines the relation between stock price reactions to the Superfund Amendments and Reauthorization Act (SARA) of 1986 and environmental information. We include alternative information sources in a test of the value relevance of environmental data. We joind some evidence that chemical firms with more extensive environmental disclosures included in their 10-K reports had a less negative reaction to SARA, while jim with greater exposure to Superfund costs (based on EPA data) had a more negative market reaction. A primary contribution of our research is the jinding that both jinancial statement environmental disclosures and estimated Superfund costs have incremental value relevance.

Abstract: We examine electric utility investor reaction surrounding twenty-two milestones associated with the passage of the Clean Air Act Amendments of 1990. Results suggest that investors did not react sharply tothe passage of the Amendments. To the extentthat statistically significant effects wereobserved, we interpret the results as moreindicative of investor concern over resolutionof uncertainty surrounding the politicalprocess and resulting provisions than ofconcern over the expected costs of compliancefollowing passage of the Amendments. Weobserved little, if any, difference betweenutilities subject to Phase I restrictions andthose not subject to Phase I. Finally, changesin monthly excess returns appear to haveresulted from changes in U.S. interest ratesand investor concern over power industryderegulation. We view our results as importantbecause any wealth effects due to environmentalregulations represent a real economic costassociated with their implementation. In thissense, we view the results as “good news” forU.S. environmental policy makers.

Abstract: The aim of this paper is to examine the effectiveness of the first European Pollution Emissions Register (EPER), a regulatory instrument based on the publication of the environmental performance of firms exceeding specified pollution limits. The Multivariate Regression Model (MVRM) is applied to capture the disciplinary effect of the EPER. So, we first perform an analysis to determine whether the publication of the EPER has a negative effect on the market value of the listed firms. Secondly, we consider the possibility of the publication of the EPER affecting the market value of firms which could be included in the EPER but are not because their emissions do not exceed the specified pollution limits. Finally, we prepare an index to compare the environmental results of the firms and analyse whether the consequences of publishing the EPER are worse for firms with high relative pollution records.

Abstract: The impact of environmental regulation on the French stock market is investigated by using event study methodology and asset pricing models. The impact of environmental regulation on the stock prices of environmentally friendly businesses and polluters is assessed. Additionally, we estimate the change in systematic risk following the introduction of new regulations. According to the results, the French stock market is particularly sensitive to the environmental regulation embodied in the European Union Emissions Trading System and less so to the regulation on water, soil and air. The chemicals, oil and gas industries exhibit negative reactions, whereas other polluters (such as construction and materials, and industrial transportation) produce positive abnormal returns.

Abstract: Following the signing of the Kyoto protocol in 2005, a new wave of green policies emerged with the intention of protecting our planet. This study explores the effects these policies have on capital markets. In particular, we assess how the risk and return of US industrial portfolios react to the announcement of green policies. Event study methodology and asset pricing models are used to that end. We document negative abnormal returns and increase in systematic risk for the biggest polluters whereas environmentally friendly businesses are affected to a lesser degree. An apparent Obama effect is observed, resulting from the 2008 outcome of the US presidential election.

Abstract: This article examines the Japanese government’s ‘Project for Green Consumer Electronics to Promote Business through the Use of Eco-points’ and its economic impact on consumer electronics firms’ stock prices. There has been little research on the economic effect of this project. In order to achieve our aim, we employ event study methodology. Our results show that stock prices responded positively to programme adoption, thereby indicating that the programme had positive effects on the related firms’ performance. The results also show that the programme’s economic effects gradually decreased over each subsequent programme extension. This probably occurred because the programme targeted durable goods, which consumers do not replace frequently.

Abstract: The vast majority of previous market-based research regarding the EPA has focused on individual firm effects due to violations. The current study attempts to identify industry/portfolio effects due to the issuance of new regulations and to any subsequent legal efforts challenging these new regulations. The issuance of both the draft and final versions of the Clean Power Plan is analysed for any market reaction that may have occurred to U.S. coal-burning utilities. Additionally, three U.S. Supreme Court rulings are analysed which: (1) directly related to the legitimacy/legality of the Clean Power Plan, or (2) were intervening and may have impacted the plan itself or the market’s estimate of its chances to survive court challenges. The analysis revealed a significant and negative market reaction to the release of the final version of the Clean Power Plan. Additionally, the analysis identified a significant and positive market reaction to a U.S. Supreme Court ruling that struck down previous attempts by the EPA to regulate the mercury emissions of power plants because the EPA had not considered the cost to the economy of these regulations. However, this market reaction may be limited to a group of smaller utilities and/or those with thinly traded securities.

Abstract: This paper examines the impact of environmental regulations on the stock price of listed fossil based energy companies in China. Based on the event study methodology, we found that environmental regulations have a variety of impacts on the stock prices of China’s listed fossil based energy companies. While legislative regulation has negative impacts on the stock prices, both environmental information disclosure (EID) and administrative regulation have positive impacts, and the impacts of market-based regulations (MBR) are firstly positive, then become negative. Further, the negative impacts of legislative regulation and the positive impacts of EID are the greatest. These results suggest that close attention should be paid to EID by policy makers. Moreover, we found that the impacts on firms vary depending on their nationalization level and scale. A surprising finding is that the negative impacts of environmental regulations are greater on listed fossil based energy companies with higher level of EID than on those with lower level of EID, which poses a challenge for policy makers in designing EID policies.

Abstract: Along with the continuous and rapid growth of Chinese economy, the problem of resource shortage and environmental deterioration has been increasingly serious, resulting in considerable attention from governments and the public. To tackle the unprecedented environmental challenge, Chinese central government has adopted an increasing number of environmental regulatory instruments, such as the new Environmental Protection Law (EPL) and the environmental inspection led by central government (EICG). As the major energy consumers and environment polluters, heavy-polluting firms are always the key targets of regulations. In response, they have strong incentives to cultivate political connections to obtain laxer regulation enforcement, which may lead to the inefficient implementation of environmental regulatory instruments. The current study aims at understanding the effect of EICG, as the national-level inspection, on the stock value of heavy-polluting firms, and examining whether political connection plays a buffer role in their relationship. Using 270 Chinese listed companies in heavy-polluting industry as samples and event study methodology, the study examined the cumulative abnormal returns (CARs) under different event windows to analyze the impact of EICG on the stock value of heavy-polluting firms, and then conducted a multivariate regression analysis to test the role of political connection. The results of both t statistics and Wilcoxon signed-rank test indicated that the negative CARs during the ten-day event window are significant at the 1% level, implying that EICG has a negative impact on the stock value of heavy-polluting firms. Meanwhile, the politically connected firms suffer less wealth loss during the ten-day event window as compared to the non-politically connected ones, demonstrating that political connection can alleviate the negative effect of EICG on the stock value of heavy-polluting firms. Additionally, further analysis demonstrated that the buffer effect of political connection is stronger for state-owned firms than for nonstate-owned firms. And compared with local political connection, central political connection is more likely to mitigate the negative effect of EICG on the stock value. The findings are beneficial to environmental agencies in setting and implementing environmental regulations in more efficient ways, and provide valuable insight for heavy-polluting firms to take efforts to fulfill their environmental responsibilities

Abstract: The impact of environmental regulation on the French stock market is investigated by using event study methodology and asset pricing models. The impact of environmental regulation on the stock prices of environmentally friendly businesses and polluters is assessed. Additionally, we estimate the change in systematic risk following the introduction of new regulations. According to the results, the French stock market is particularly sensitive to the environmental regulation embodied in the European Union Emissions Trading System and less so to the regulation on water, soil and air. The chemicals, oil and gas industries exhibit negative reactions, whereas other polluters (such as construction and materials, and industrial transportation) produce positive abnormal returns.

Abstract: Curbing environmental pollution is a key priority in China as reflected in the adoption of policies such as “New Normal” and the takeover of environmental enforcement by the top leadership of the central government in 2015. In this paper, we use a dataset of publicly-traded firms in the Shanghai and Shenzhen stock exchanges and the event study methodology to gauge the reaction of the investor class to the new environmental enforcement regime. Our results indicate that, together, the announcement and implementation of the new enforcement regime spurred a significant decline of over $29 billion in shareholder value of polluting companies, suggesting that capital market participants expect increased regulatory costs for targeted companies. We also find that neither political connections nor firm size mitigated the severity of the market losses. Instead, larger firms and state-owned enterprises with excess capacity experienced bigger declines in market value.

S02 market

This paper examines the valuation implications of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions allowances. We posit that the value of a firm’s bank of emission allowances has two components that are likely to be positively valued by the capital market: (1) an asset value component; and (2) a real option value component. Since the necessary data to examine this research hypothesis in the setting of GHG emission allowances is not yet available, we test our conjecture by examining the value relevance of sulfur dioxide (SO2) emission allowances held by US electric utilities. Empirical results reveal that the capital market assigns a positive price to a firm’s bank of SO2 emission allowances, consistent with the argument that emission allowances have, at least, an asset value component that is assigned a positive price by the market. We also find weak evidence consistent with the market assigning a real option value to the allowance banks.


We investigate how cap-and-trade regulation affects profits. In late April 2006, the EU C O 2 allowance price dropped 50 percent, equating to a € 28 billion reduction in the value of aggregate annual allowances. We examine daily returns for 552 stocks from the EUROSTOXX index. Despite reductions in environmental costs, we find that stock prices fell for firms in both carbon- and electricity-intensive industries, particularly for firms selling primarily within the EU. Our results imply that investors focus on product price impacts, rather than just compliance costs and the nominal value of pollution permits.

Abstract: n.a.

Abstract: The aim of this paper is to examine whether shareholders consider the EU Emissions Trading Scheme (EUETS) as value-relevant for the participating firms. Ananalysis is conducted of the share prices changes as caused by the first publication of compliance data in April, 2006, which disclosed an over-allocation of emission allowances. Through an event study, it is shown that share prices actually increased as a result of the allowance price drop when firms have a lower carbon-intensity of production and larger allowance holdings. There was no significant value impact from firms’ allowance trade activity or from the pass-through of carbon-related production costs (carbon leakage). The conclusion is that the EU ETS does ‘bite’. The main impact on the share prices of firms arises from their carbon-intensity of production. The EU ETS is thus valued as a restriction on pollution.

Abstract: This paper studies the impact of environmental protection efforts on the market values of firms using the carbon emission rights trading scheme (CERTS) in China as an exogenous shock. We find that (1) the environmental policy of CERTS increases the market values of firms in the environment industry, (2) the efforts of firms on environmental protection further enhance their market values, and (3) the market values of firms located in the regions with CERTS are further improved. Our findings suggest that firms in the environment industry could improve their market values and obtain benefits by strengthening their environmental protection activities. We offer an important policy implication that the government should enact appropriate policies to improve the activities of firms on environmental protection and the sustainable development of the economy.

Abstract: Purpose – This paper aims to investigate the impact of the proposed carbon tax on the financial market return of Australian firms. It also considers the differential tax effect on individual firms with different carbon profiles, including factors such as emissions costs, carbon disclosure and climate-change policies. Design/methodology/approach – Utilising the event-study method, the authors examine the market reaction to seven key carbon legislative information events that occurred from February 2011 to November 2011. The sample includes 48 different firms whose emissions-related data are available from Carbon Disclosure Project reports; thus, 336 firm-event observations are used for the cross-sectional analysis. Findings – The paper documents evidence that the proposed tax has an overall negative impact on shareholder wealth as measured by abnormal returns. The negative impact varies across sectors, with the most significant effect found in the materials, industrial and financial sectors. It was also found that a firm’s direct carbon exposure (as measured by Scope 1 emissions) is significantly associated with abnormal returns, whereas the indirect exposure (as measured by Scope 2 emissions) is not, because Scope 2 emissions are not covered by the tax. In addition, the findings suggest that the information content of the events is more notable during the early stages of the development of the carbon tax. Research limitations/implications – The sample is restricted to the largest firms with relevant carbon profile information. Thus, caution should be exercised when generalising the inferences. Practical implications – The introduction of the carbon tax was largely unexpected and most firms were unprepared for it; thus, their carbon policy appears inadequate and does not impress investors. An understanding of how the carbon tax affects shareholder value and welfare will encourage management to take proactive actions to mitigate the compliance costs of carbon legislation. Originality/value – The enactment of the Australian carbon tax perhaps represents one of the biggest social and economic restructuring events in the country’s history. Our results offer initial insight into its impact and suggest that investors would penalise firms with heavy direct operational emissions. In addition, Australian corporate carbon policy seems inadequate, so does not reverse the negative effect of the tax on the value of a firm.

Abstract: This paper studies the impact of verified emissions publications in the European Emissions Trading Scheme (EUETS)on the market value of participating companies. Using event study methodology on a unique sample of 368 listed companies, we show that verified emissions only resulted instatistically significant market responses when the carbon price was high and allowances carcity was anticipated. The cross-section analysis of abnormal returns surrounding the publication of verified emissions shows that shareprices decrease when actual emissions relative to allocated emissions increase. This negative relationship between allocation shortfalls and firm value is only significant for firms that are either carbon-intensive, compared to sector peers, or are less likely to pass through carbon-related costs in their product prices. The results suggest that although the EU ETS has been deemed unsuccessful so far due to over-allocation and low carbon price, shareholders initially perceived allowance holdings as value relevant. Our results highlight that a significant carbon market price and addressing pass-through costing are essential for successful future reforms of the EU ETS and other analogous carbon cap-and-trade system simplemented or planned world wide.


Abstract: The purpose of this study is to investigate Chinese market reaction to environmental‐policy‐related announcements from the Chinese government in response to the Copenhagen Climate Summit from 2009 to 2011. Based on a market model with a newly developed bootstrapping significance testing methodology, we find that market reactions to these policy‐related announcements are significantly positive. Further, we test whether specific industry or firm characteristics can explain cross‐sectional variation in these market reactions. Our results show that market reactions are more significantly positive for high‐pollution industries than low‐pollution industries. The study contributes to the understanding of how investors respond to announcements related to the Copenhagen Climate Summit in the context of China. In contrast to prior studies that examine directly whether a firm’s abnormal return or cumulative abnormal return is negatively affected by environmental regulations, we conduct this study in a distinct way in that our results show that an expectation of delayed carbon legislation will affect a firm’s abnormal return positively, which indicates that the market is likely to respond negatively to an immediate implementation of carbon legislations.

Abstract: This paper investigates the impact of global climate-policy related events on shareholder value by analyzing short-term market reactions to the outcomes of international climate negotiations. We examine the stock market reaction to two categories of events using the event study methodology: The first category includes different international climate policy events. We compare the stock price effects on the largest low-carbon companies with the largest high-carbon (oil, gas, coal) companies globally. We find that international climate negotiations can have a signaling effect on global financial markets. Climate negotiations that facilitated the transition to a low-carbon economy show either positive wealth effects for “green” companies and insignificant effects on ”brown” companies (Cancun and Doha) or negative wealth effects for “brown” companies and insignificant effects on ”green” companies (Paris). Additionally, we find (statistically significant) differences between companies from emerging vs. developed markets. However, although the Paris climate agreement was considered a milestone in climate policy, its effect on stock markets did not reflect that to the same extend. The second category includes the announcement of the Clean200 ranking (a list of the largest “green” companies globally). We find that the wealth effects are greater for higher ranked companies of the Clean200 ranking, however only for companies from developed countries. The findings show that environmental performance, indicated by a ranking, has an influence on short-term financial performance as well.

Abstract: The impact of environmental regulation on the French stock market is investigated by using event study methodology and asset pricing models. The impact of environmental regulation on the stock prices of environmentally friendly businesses and polluters is assessed. Additionally, we estimate the change in systematic risk following the introduction of new regulations. According to the results, the French stock market is particularly sensitive to the environmental regulation embodied in the European Union Emissions Trading System and less so to the regulation on water, soil and air. The chemicals, oil and gas industries exhibit negative reactions, whereas other polluters (such as construction and materials, and industrial transportation) produce positive abnormal returns.

Abstract: Pollution problems have recently become prominent in China, which has not only amplified public concerns on environmental protection but has also pushed the Chinese government to enforce more stringent environmental regulation. In this paper, we investigate the stock market response to the release of new environmental policies in China from the perspective of investor attention. By using the event study methodology, we assess the impact of 10 environmental policies issued by the central government over the period of 2014-2017. We find consistent evidence that the announcement of new environmental policies hurts the stock returns of heavily polluting firms in the short term. Meanwhile, compared to environmental regulations, environmental laws result in more adverse market reactions due to stricter policy enforcement. More importantly, investor attention to the environment issues, as measured by the Baidu Index, plays an essential role in predicting the stock market response, as we find a higher Baidu Index leads to lower stock returns for heavily polluting firms. Heterogeneity analyses further reveal the negative impact of environmental policies on market value is contingent on firm characteristics such as size, ownership structure, profitability and industry.

CSR-Environmental news

Abstract: n.a.

Environmental management has the potential to play a pivotal role in the financial performance of the firm. Many individuals suggest that profitability is hurt by the higher production costs of environmental management initiatives, while others cite anecdotal evidence of increased profitability. A theoretical model is proposed that links strong environmental management to improved perceived future financial performance, as measured by stock market performance. The linkage to firm performance is tested empirically using financial event methodology and archival data of firm-level environmental and financial performance. Significant positive returns were measured for strong environmental management as indicated by environmental performance awards, and significant negative returns were measured for weak environmental management as indicated by environmental crises. The implicit financial market valuation of these events also was estimated. Cross-sectional analysis of the environmental award events revealed differences for first-time awards and between industries. First-time award announcements were associated with greater increases in market valuation, although smaller increases were observed for firms in environmentally dirty industries, possibly indicative of market skepticism. This linkage between environmental management and financial performance can be used by both researchers and practitioners as one measure of the benefits experienced by industry leaders, and as one criterion against which to measure investment alternatives.

Many previous event studies have found unexpectedly large losses to firms involved in negative incidents. Many of these studies’ authors explain such losses as “goodwill losses” or “reputation effects.” To test this hypothesis, we search for residual losses (in excess of direct costs) to firms involved in events that produce ill will, but do not affect the quality of the firms’ final products nor break implicit labor or supply contracts. Our sample of events is 73 negative environmental events reported in the Wall Street Journal between 1970 and 1992 in which electric power companies or oil firms with listed stocks were involved. We find an overall insignificant capital market response. We interpret this as showing that firms are punished only for actions that actually harm customers or suppliers. Although others have found similar outcomes, our results enhance previous research by extending the findings to a broader range of environmental incidents over a longer time period. Further, our findings suggest that the large residual losses in other event studies may be due to reputation mechanisms (and not measurement errors or event study idiosyncrasies), when defined traditionally — only those who are (potentially) harmed incur the costs of punishment.

Abstract: More and more firms tend nowadays to adopt environment-friendly attitudes. Their motivation originates in local environmental regulations or requirements of foreign markets to which firms export (both induced by consumers and investors ́ valuation of pro-environment initiatives). There is a well-established literature capturing the impact on stockprices of environmental information releases using the event study methodology. Studies are usually based on information environmental regulation (i.e., the regulator announcement of emissions or compliance status with respect to standards) or on simple media coverage of environmental news. Dasgupta, Laplante and Mamingi (2001) is one of the few references to show that public information on environmental behavior has impact on stock prices in the developing world. It includes Argentina in its analysis together with Chile, Mexico and the Philippines. In this manuscript, we focus specifically on Argentina. We find that positive environmental news have no impact, while negative news do have an effect on average rates of return a few days following its appearance. But, when focusing on different types of positive news, we find that ISO certification has no effect whatsoever, while investment decisions do have some positive significant influence on returns. On the other side, negative news influence on stock returns is particularly significant for events linked to citizen complaints and government rulings (confirming other studies results) and for media coverage of oil company issues. However, we find abnormal returns of a much smaller magnitude than other studiesfor developing countries. We believe that is readonable because there seem to be no reason why the level of abnormal returns (not its volatility) should be larger for environmental news in developing countries than in developed ones.

Abstract: Based on a formal model of how investments in corporate social responsibility act upon firm value through goodwill, we derive the hypothesis that under uncertainty, bad news are detrimental to good-will, and subsequently have a negative impact on value. We examine by event study methodology whether bad news in the form of environmental (EV) incidents a¤ect .rm value negatively as measured by abnormal returns using a global data set. An EV incident is a company incident allegedly in violation of international norms on environmen-tal issues. We analyze 142 EV incidents 2003-2006. The incidents are generally associated with negative cumulative abnormal returns, but which are not statistically signi.cant, except for incidents for .rms in the EURO zone. The results are robust with respect to a number of variations in test methodology.

Abstract: Using an event study methodology, we analyze the impact of Vigeo corporate social rating announcements from 2004 to 2009 on short term stock returns. The results show a positive significant influence of the announcement on the stock returns over two days prior to the announcement and two days following. Using a panel methodology, we analyze the relation between the content of the announcement and the abnormal return. The results show that only a limited number of features play a significant role. Moreover, some features have a positive influence on stock returns whereas others have a negative one. This study sheds some light on the complex relationships between Corporate Social Responsibility rating and Financial Performance.

Abstract: Event study methodology is used to analyse whether bad news in the form of Environmental (EV) incidents affect firm value negatively. An international sample of firms with EV incidents is studied. It is found that EV incidents are generally associated with the loss of value. For European firms, the loss is statistically significant and the magnitude of the abnormal returns should be of economic significance to corporations and investors. The results are not sensitive to multiple variations in methodology, including the use of international versions of the market model as well as of multi-factor models of the Fama–French type. Results are also robust to different parametric and nonparametric test statistics.

Abstract: The stock market’s reaction to information disclosure of environmental violation events (EVEs) is investigated multi-dimensionally for Chinese listed companies, including variables such as pollution types, information disclosure sources, information disclosure levels, modernization levels of the region where the company locates, ultimate ownership of the company, and ownership held by the largest shareholder. Using the method of event study, daily abnormal return (AR) and accumulative abnormal return (CAR) are calculated under different event window for examining the extent to which the stock market responds to the EVEs. Furthermore, statistical significance of the difference in stock market reaction is compared between event firms with different characteristics. The relationship between CAR and its impact factors is examined by multivariate analysis. The findings reveal that the average reduction in market value is estimated to be much lower than the estimated changes in market value for similar events in other countries, demonstrating that the negative environmental events of Chinese listed companies currently have weak impact on the stock market.

Abstract: This study examines whether shareholders are sensitive to corporations’ environmental footprint. Specifically, I conduct an event study around the announcement of corporate news related to environment for all US publicly traded companies from 1980 to 2009. In keeping with the view that environmental corporate social responsibility (CSR) generates new and competitive resources for firms, I find that companies reported to behave responsibly toward the environment experience a significant stock price increase, whereas firms that behave irresponsibly face a significant decrease. Extending this view of “environment-as-a-resource,” I posit that the value of environmental CSR depends on external and internal moderators. First, I argue that external pressure to behave responsibly towards the environment―which has increased dramatically over recent decades―exacerbates the punishment for eco-harmful behavior and reduces the reward for eco-friendly initiatives. This argument is supported by the data: over time, the negative stock market reaction to eco-harmful behavior has increased, while the positive reaction to eco-friendly initiatives has decreased. Second, I argue that environmental CSR is a resource with decreasing marginal returns and insurance-like features. In keeping with this view, I find that the positive (negative) stock market reaction to eco-friendly (-harmful) events is smaller for companies with higher levels of environmental CSR.

Abstract: Motivated by the controversial debate on mandatory reductions of greenhouse gases in the U.S., this study explores whether the market values corporate response to tackle carbon dioxide emissions. We measure corporate responses using the measure of media tone based on the positive and negative words in each news article. Our results show that the market reacts favorably to the negative media exposure of corporate response to climate change over the announcement period and the one-year period, which implies that the socially responsible action to tackle climate change is costly. We further find that the positive response is less pronounced for firms from polluting industries and firms with poor environmental performance.

Abstract: Few studies to date have addressed the relationship between the food industry’s environmental and financial performances although the industry is one of the biggest contributors of greenhouse gas emissions. We analyze the impact of environmental news about selected food companies on their stock prices. Results show that positive (negative) events that are the result of direct internal company actions lead to higher (lower) predicted returns, whereas events related to third-party opinions lead to smaller changes in predicted returns in short event windows. This study highlights the importance of conducting the analysis on a disaggregated basis by incorporating firm-level variables.

Abstract: Using a unique data set, I study how stock markets react to positive and negative events concerned with a firm׳s corporate social responsibility (CSR). I show that investors respond strongly negatively to negative events and weakly negatively to positive events. I then show that investors do value “offsetting CSR,” that is positive CSR news concerning firms with a history of poor stakeholder relations. In contrast, investors respond negatively to positive CSR news which is more likely to result from agency problems. Finally, I provide evidence that CSR news with stronger legal and economic information content generates a more pronounced investor reaction.

Abstract: The stock market’s reaction to information disclosure of environmental violation events (EVEs) is investigated multi-dimensionally for Chinese listed companies, including variables such as pollution types, information disclosure sources, information disclosure levels, modernization levels of the region where the company locates, ultimate ownership of the company, and ownership held by the largest shareholder. Using the method of event study, daily abnormal return (AR) and accumulative abnormal return (CAR) are calculated under different event window for examining the extent to which the stock market responds to the EVEs. Furthermore, statistical significance of the difference in stock market reaction is compared between event firms with different characteristics. The relationship between CAR and its impact factors is examined by multivariate analysis. The findings reveal that the average reduction in market value is estimated to be much lower than the estimated changes in market value for similar events in other countries, demonstrating that the negative environmental events of Chinese listed companies currently have weak impact on the stock market.

Abstract: Chinese manufacturers, which produce nearly one-fourth of global manufacturing outputs, play important roles in the global supply chains formany products. The Chinese government proposed the “Made in China 2025” plan to help manufacturers upgrade their technology, so that the country will become a green and innovative “world manufacturing power”. It is important for researchers, practitioners, and the government to know the benefits and costs of being environmentally sustainable. In this paper, we investigate the effects of environmentally sustainable announcements of Chinese firms in the manufacturing, and the wholesale and retail industry on their stock market performance. First, we find negative market responses, which are significant in scale and statistics. Second, the stock market reactions are different for firms in different industries. Third, the stock market reactions are different in different years. Finally, we control the firm size and the book-to-market ratio with the Fama–French three factor model. The result is highly consistent with the one from the simple market model.

Abstract: This paper examines the impact of environmental, social, governance (ESG) and sustainability initiatives on stock value of listed companies in Hong Kong. Event methodology is used to examine whether the market responses significantly to the implementation of these initiatives. Our result shows that the market reacts more positively to ESG initiatives than sustainability initiatives. This brings several implications to corporates’ strategy as well as development of socially responsible investments (SRI). To facilitate the development of SRI, companies should communicate the value and returns of these initiatives clearly with investors; financial institutions should also equip investors with knowledge to understand non-financial information. Enhancing the transparency of sustainability index will also give investors more credible information to relate firms’ CSR performance with firm value.

Abstract: This research examines market reactions to socially irresponsible corporate behaviours. An event study was conducted to detect the presence of abnormal returns during the releases of media news regarding the social irresponsible practices of Indonesian listed companies in environmental, social and financial aspects. The examples of unfavorable environmental practices are illegal lodging, forest fires, and pollutions, while in social aspects it includes labor strikes and lay-offs, market monopoly, and similar practices. Socially irresponsible practices in financial aspect includes frauds and tax evasions. Prior studies from more developed nations have been widely documented in the literature. However, the use of media reports of three different aspects to measure the event is new to the study. The results of prior studies, which mostly come from developed markets, have also been inconclusive. The use of a sample from a developing market is expected to provide distinct contribution to the existing literature. The results show that Indonesian stock market responded to media news regarding corporate unethical behaviors, particularly in social aspect, as indicated by negative abnormal returns in the third day after the news releases by prominent online newspapers, Kompas. When such information is split into each category, namely: environmental, social, financial information, the result is only consistent for social issues. Negative abnormal returns occurred on the third day after the media reports of unethical social behaviors of the sample firms. However, we did not find significant market responses to media reports of unfavorable financial and environmental practices by the sample companies. Using paired sample t-tests to examine the market response before and after the event, this study only finds significant difference in cumulative abnormal returns for unfavorable social practices. In general this study offers an empirical evidence that media reports on CSR issues have information content, especially for firms reported as having problems in maintaining social responsibility.

Abstract: This paper presents new evidence on the implications of corporate social responsibility (CSR) on stock returns. By implementing a longterm focus as well as using subdivided measures for CSR, we cater to the intangible nature and the heterogeneity of CSR activities. We use a novel classification of these activities into nine areas, each belonging to one of the standard environment, social, and governance (ESG) dimensions. Using cross-sectional return regressions and buy-and-hold abnormal returns, we find that firms with strong CSR significantly outperform firms with weak CSR in the mid and long run in certain areas. Firm returns increase up to 3.8% with respect to a one-standard-deviation increase of the CSR rating. In a two-stage least squares (2SLS) approach we verify that the main economic channel for the appreciation of strong CSR stocks is unexpected additional cash flows. The results are relevant for assessing the efficiency of CSR, and have broader implications for asset managers who can expect abnormal returns by investing in firms that exhibit a high CSR in the respective scores and holding the stocks for a longer period.

Abstract: Stories about corporate social responsibility have become very frequent over the past decade, and managers can no longer ignore their impact on firm value. In this paper, we investigate the extent and the determinants of the stock market’s reaction following ordinary news related to environmental, social and governance issues—the so-called ESG factors. To that purpose, we use an original database provided by Covalence EthicalQuote. Our empirical analysis is based on about 33,000 ESG news (positive or negative), targeting one hundred listed companies over the period 2002–2010. On average, firms facing negative events experience a drop in their market value of 0.1%, whereas companies gain nothing on average from positive announcements. We find also that market participants are responsive to the media, but they do not react to firms’ press releases or to NGOs’ disclosures. Moreover, our results indicate that sector’s reputation mitigates the loss (the goodwill hypothesis) and that cultural proximity and lexical contents of ESG disclosures play a significant role in the magnitude of the impact

Abstract: Environmental pollution brings severe challenges in the context of a high growing economy of China. Pollution events bring serious ecological cost to the environment, direct costs from sanction, and reputational damage to the listed firms. We study the market reaction to 145 pollution events in China during Jan 2008 and Feb 2015. We find that the 2-day cumulative abnormal returns (CARs) of pollution events are significantly negative, which shows the disciplining effect of the stock market on the listed firms. In addition, pollution events with sanctions have lower CARs than otherwise, which are heterogeneous among different sanction types such as shutting down, fines and rectification. Finally, water pollution has lower CARs than other pollution types. We find that direct economic loss is an important reason for the negative market reactions to pollution events.

Corporate Environmental Practices

Environmental Awards and Certifications (EAC)

Abstract: This paper examines the relationship between environmental conscientiousness scores and stock returns. It appears that the US capital markets have only weakly rewarded environmentally conscientious companies. However, companies with the worst environmental conscientiousness scores have shown lower average performance.

This paper extends ISO certification research by investigating whether a stock value is influenced by the announcement of its ISO registration with respect to the firm size, industry, and ISO standard series on the Taiwan Stock Exchange. The results show that receiving ISO registration influences abnormal returns. The market reacts favorably to both small and large firms but has no reaction to medium firms in terms of a firm’s capital. We also observe significant positive market reaction for Plastics and Textiles. A beneficial implication is that investors may benefit more from their investment endeavors if they can properly examine the specific effects.

In contrast to research studies on developed markets, there is scarce evidence about the relationship between firms’ economic and environmental performance in emerging markets. In this paper, evidence is provided for such a link by showing that publicly traded firms at the Lima Stock Exchange (LSE) offer positive abnormal returns around the announcement date of an ISO 14001 certification. Although there were only 10 firms that fulfilled the sample criteria, positive and statistically significant average cumulative abnormal returns could be found ranging from 0.7% to 1.27% for one day previous to and one day after the announcement date of the company’s first ISO 14001 certification, depending on the model that was used to generate abnormal returns. The positive abnormal performance was not produced by only a single firm, and is robust across different model specifications. Although the low magnitude of the abnormal performance indicates that environmental issues still have little importance to investors at the LSE, Peruvian-based firms have an important incentive to become green.

Abstract: This article investigates stock price reactions to the release of the environmental management ranking issued by Nihon Keizai Shimbun (Nikkei newspaper) from 1998 to 2005, by using a standard event study methodology. An examination of stock price movements of the top 100 manufacturing companies reveals that stock prices during the sample period did not respond significantly to the release of the ranking within a 3-day event window. However, market responses became significantly positive after 2003, while they were significantly negative in 1999 and 2000. The stock prices of upgraded companies in particular reacted negatively before 2000, but positively after 2002. These results indicate that market reactions were changed between 2001 and 2002, when the Japanese government showed its strong commitment to environmental policies by establishing the Ministry of the Environment and signing the Kyoto Protocol, following a number of legislations.

Abstract: This paper examines how the corporate environmental performance of a firm — evaluated by the Nikkei Environmental Management Ranking survey — affects the ranked firms’ stock price, using the market model that accounts for Generalized Autoregressive Conditional Heteroskedasticity (GARCH) effects. Accordingly, we compare the results of the EGARCH model with that of Ordinary Least Squares (OLS) for a period of eight years and for each year. The obtained results indicate that the stock prices of firms ranked above thirty in Nikkei Environmental Management Ranking have risen, fallen, or remained constant on the event day. The findings based on the analysis by the period of eight years suggests that market reaction to corporate environmental performance has a positive effect for the higher frequency of ranking and a negative effect for the lower frequency of ranking.

Abstract: The main purpose of this work is to analyse whether ISO 14001 certification is interpreted by the capital market as a sign of environmental responsibility, modifying long-term efficiency expectations and the profitability of firms. Under competing assumptions that ISO 14001 certification is adopted by firms either proactively or reactively, we test competing hypotheses about how this certification affects the market value of firms. The analysis is based on a sample of 80 environmental certifications of the plant systems or processes of large Spanish firms which traded on the continuous market of the Madrid Stock Exchange from 1996 to 2002. Using event study methodology, we found that ISO 14001 certification has a negative effect on the market value of certain firms. Specifically, the results obtained seem to show that the market negatively views the allocation of resources to ISO 14001 certification in the case of less polluting and less internationalised firms. On the other hand, the results obtained do not suggest clear evidence that the economic impact of ISO 14001 certification is negative for more polluting and more internationalised firms.

Abstract: The environmental decisions of corporations can have a huge impact on both the environment and a company’s value. This paper finds that the stock market reacts negatively to news about the environmental behavior of firms. A 2009 Newsweek study on the “greenness” of companies is used in the study. The event study methodology is used with stock prices to measure the stock market reaction by creating Cumulative Abnormal Returns. The average abnormal returns of all the companies are significantly negative suggesting that investors react adversely to “green” news.

Abstract: The purpose of this article is to examine empirically the impact of environmental certification on firm financial performance (FP). The main question is whether there is a “green premium” for certified firms, and, if so, for what kind of certification. We analyze the short-run and the long-run stock price performance using an event-study methodology on a sample of Canadian and U.S. firms. The results of short-run event abnormal returns indicate that forest certification does not have any significant impact on firm FP regardless of the certification system carried out by firms. Unlike the short-run results, the long-run post-event abnormal returns suggest that forest certification has, on average, a negative impact on firm FP. However, the impact of forest certification on firm FP depends on who grants the certification, since only industry-led certification (Sustainable Forestry Initiative, Canadian Standards Association and ISO14001) are penalized by financial markets, whereas non-governmental organizations–led Forest Stewardship Council certification is not.

Abstract: This paper analyzes the shareholder value effects of environmental performance by measuring the stock market reaction associated with announcements of environmental performance. We examine the market reaction to two categories of environmental performance. The first category includes 417 announcements of Corporate Environmental Initiatives (CEIs) that provide information about self-reported corporate efforts to avoid, mitigate, or offset the environmental impacts of the firm’s products, services, or processes. The second category includes 363 announcements of Environmental Awards and Certifications (EACs) that provide information about recognition granted by third-parties specifically for environmental performance. Although the market does not react significantly to the aggregated CEI and EAC announcements, we find statistically significant market reactions for certain CEI and EAC subcategories. Specifically, announcements of philanthropic gifts for environmental causes are associated with significant positive market reaction, voluntary emission reductions are associated with significant negative market reaction, and ISO 14001 certifications are associated with significant positive market reaction. The difference between the market reactions to the CEI and EAC categories is statistically insignificant. Overall, the market is selective in reacting to announcements of environmental performance with certain types of announcements even valued negatively.

Abstract: Purpose – This study aspires to explore how the US stock market reacts to ISO 14001 certification announcements. Design/methodology/approach – The paper employs an event-study methodology on a sample of 140 announcements and matching control firms to study the impact of ISO 14001 certification announcements. Findings – The results suggest that ISO 14001 certification announcements have a negative impact on stock performance. More importantly, they show that the shareholder wealth reduced due to these certifications announcements. Research limitations/implications – This study focuses on short-term stock market reaction. Future studies should consider the entire sample of ISO 14001-certified firms within the USA and use certification date to evaluate short- as well as long-term improvements in shareholder wealth. Practical implications – The results suggest that firms will need to educate shareholders about their actions towards the betterment of the environment. Such coordinated communication will ensure that the ISO 14001 standard is highly regarded, widely adopted, and even requested by shareholders. Originality/value – Past empirical studies indicate that certified environmental management systems help organizations to reduce waste and pollution, thereby ultimately resulting in superior environmental and economic performance. At the same time, given its focus on the process rather than performance outcomes, opponents criticize ISO 14001 suggesting that it is just a label for image building. Owing to this dilemma, it is pertinent to evaluate how shareholders perceive a firm’s attainment of ISO 14001 certification announcements.

Abstract: In the presence of imperfect information, voluntary certification can provide an important complement to mandatory inspections as a basis for environmental regulation in low income countries. Using data from Mexico’s Clean Industry Program, we show that patterns of compliance and certification by sector are consistent with a model in which selection into the voluntary program permits more efficient targeting of regulator effort. As expected given the informational role played by certification in the model, we also find evidence, for a sample of publicly traded firms, of positive stock price deviations linked to the announcement of certification.

Abstract: We find that firms winning Green Company Awards in China from 2008 to 2011 experienced on average insignificant and in some cases significantly negative effects on shareholder value. Various robustness checks suggest that these findings are not driven by the inefficiency of the Chinese stock market or a lack of perceived credibility of the award. In addition, we find important variation in the responses across firms: shareholders of firms in low-pollution industries and firms with primarily private ownership responded more negatively to award announcements. Furthermore, the peers of winning firms showed higher announcement returns than the award winners. Our results suggest that a key benefit of corporate environmentalism in China comes through building stronger relationships with government, and that otherwise the market generally discourages firms from environmental leadership.

We use an event study to capture the investor reaction to the first Newsweek Green Rankings in September 2009, a notable, multi-dimensional recent development in the rating of corporate environmental CSR performance. Drawing on stakeholder theory, we develop hypotheses about (a) market investor reaction to the disclosure of new, relevant corporate environmental performance in both the short and longer (6–12-month) term, (b) whether market investors’ reaction reflects industry context, and (c) whether firm-level contextual variables representing firm size, and market legitimacy significantly impacts the investor reaction. We find that, for the sample of the largest 500 US firms ranked by Newsweek, investors react positively both to the raw and within-industry rankings of green performance in terms of both short-term and longer-term (up to 12 months) returns. Moreover, the investor reaction is significantly influenced by contextual variables such as firm size and firm market legitimacy. Our results are compatible with the inference that rating agencies like Newsweek serve a valuable information dissemination function such that investors in better ranked firms anticipate larger future cash flows due to more positive reactions from key stakeholders such as environmentallyconscious customers, employees, NGOs, regulators, and thus reward these firms with stock price increases. Finally, larger, more visible firms benefit more, while firms which have more market legitimacy (represented by past financial performance) benefit less. We believe these findings will be of considerable interest to scholars of environmental corporate social responsibility.

Abstract: We use event study analysis to determine whether the release of Newsweek’s “Global 100 Ranking” is relevant for the market. We look at one- and two-day event windows to check two possible reactions of the market: changes in the value of an equal-weight portfolio, and changes in the relative price of the stocks. The results show that the market reacted to the “Global 100 Ranking” by changing the relative price of the stocks, but not the value of the portfolio. Specifically, getting one position closer to the top of Newsweek’s “Global 100 Green Rankings” increases the value of an average firm in the list by eleven million dollars. There is also some evidence of a stronger reaction of non-US-traded stocks compared to US-traded ones. Non-heavy sector stocks display a more robust reaction than heavy sector stocks.We find that investors in US-traded stocks are interested in past environmental performance and managerial quality, while the second is more relevant for investors in non-US-traded stocks. Results are robust to alternative model specifications.

This research examines the impact of environmental performance on firm value, applying the event study methodology to Newsweek’s ‘Green Rankings’ announcement of 2012 for large US firms. Specifically, it analyzes the impact of the absolute green score and green rank of firms on their performance in the stock market. We found that investors perceive the announcement as positive news, leading to significant positive standardized cumulative abnormal returns (SCARs). After controlling for industry- and firm-specific effects, we observed that firms with repeated green rankings for enhancing environmental performance showed significantly higher SCARs than those with either reduced or unchanged environmental performance. In addition, the environmental impact score measuring environmental damage from a firm’s operational activities was found to be the most influential factor in improving the firm’s value. Our findings are beneficial to managers in allocating resources to different types of environmental initiative, and provide valuable insight for sustainable environmental investment.

Abstract: Concerns regarding changes in the natural environment have led to an increase in research regarding environmental management (EM) practices. Studies examining the financial impact of such practices have been inconclusive. Drawing on agency theory and the resource-based view of the firm, we provide a comprehensive examination of the market’s reaction to firms identified by Newsweek’s Green Rankings as the best (top 100) and worst (bottom 100) for EM reputation among the largest 500 firms in the United States. Specifically, we investigate the extent to which the market reacts differently to service firms and manufacturing firms in regards to environmental reputation signals. We find that the market responds favorably to positive environmental management reputation signals for service firms and to negative environmental management reputation signals for manufacturing firms. Post hoc analysis reveals that both service firms and manufacturing firms are rewarded for being ranked ‘‘in the middle’’ of the Newsweek Green Rankings

Abstract: Are shareholders sensitive to corporate initiative of implementing Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) projects? And if so, what are the key factors that influence the corresponding abnormal return to enterprises? To answer these questions, we employed an event study methodology to evaluate the stock market reaction to the CDM projects certification in China since 2005. We illuminated three sources of ambiguity in the relationship between corporate CDM initiatives and shareholder value, namely the impacts from time, CDM types, and credits of carbon emission reduction (CER). Our empirical results showed that the CDM initiatives could benefit corporate shareholder values. The expected CER credit is the main driver for the increase in shareholder value. However, we also found that the positive shareholder value effect of CDM decreases over time. In particular, industrial gas CDM projects rather than renewable energy and energy efficiency projects are preferred by shareholders; but there are no significant differences in the shareholder value effect between bilateral contracting and unilateral implementation. This paper advanced knowledge on the shareholder value effect of corporate CDM initiatives, and more generally, the impact of corporate carbon trading on financial performance of enterprises in an emerging country context.

Corporate Environmental Initiatives (CEI)

Environmental Report

Abstract: This study was carried out to examine the economic consequences of voluntary environmental reporting on shareholders’ wealth among Malaysian Listed Companies that voluntarily disclosed environmental information in their financial report. One hundred andfifty two (152) companies ofBursa Malaysia (MSE) had been identified as a sample in the current study. Seventy six (76) companies were classified as environmental reporting companies while the remaining companies were classified as non-environmental reporting companies. The classification was done in order to determine the differences between share price, profitability and market equity for both types of companies. The study hypothesizes that voluntary environmental reporting leads to an improvement in the shareholders wealth. However, the results show that there is no significant difference between cumulative abnormal return for environmental and non-environmental reporting companies. Based on the results obtained, it can also be concluded that profitability and size of the companies do not have any significant roles in deciding whether or not to produce environmental reporting companies.

Abstract: This article investigates the relationship between abnormal returns and the social and environmental performance of companies listed for trading on the São Paulo Stock Exchange (Bovespa) that regularly publish a social balance sheet according to the model proposed by the Brazilian Institute of Social and Economic Analysis (IBASE). We measured the social and environmental performance based on internal and external social and environmental responsibility indicators taken from the social balance sheets of companies that publish such a report, drawn from among the 100 largest companies by market value, between 1999 and 2006. To calculate abnormal returns we used the share price and beta, available in the Economática and Ipeadata databases. The hypothesis was tested by regression analysis with fixed-effect panel data, adjusted by the robustness tool, applying the Hausman test. The results show that the external social responsibility indicator, the internal social responsibility indicator and the environmental responsibility indicator do not have any relationship with the firms’ abnormal returns.

Abstract: Purpose – This study investigates the effect sustainability reporting has on companies’ financial performance. Sustainability reports are voluntarily released by companies that provide additional information to the stakeholders regarding the impact their activities have on the environment and society. Design/Methodology/Approach: This empirical paper analyses and identifies overlaps, gaps, limitations and flaws in current constructs of sustainability reporting. Using event study method to estimate abnormal returns for a 31 day event window for a sample of 68 listed companies, 17 listed in New Zealand Stock Exchange (NZX) and 51 listed in the Australian Stock exchange (ASX). Findings: Results of the empirical study indicate that sustainability reporting is statistically significant in explaining abnormal returns for the Australian companies. The cross-sectional analysis results of the combined dataset for the two countries support the view that the contextual factors of industry type significantly impacts abnormal returns of the reporting companies. In this regard, this study identifies several contextual factors, such as industry and type of sustainability report, that have the potential to impact the relationship. Only the CSR type of sustainability report was significant in explaining the abnormal return of New Zealand companies. Practical implications: To underscore the practical implications of the theory, it shows, by reference to the model, how sustainability reporting influences financial performance for companies engaged in industries that have environmental implications. However, the simplistic model may also have many other applications in management and the social sciences. Originality value: The proposed model is highly original in providing a framework for studying the impact of sustainability reporting in companies that have an environmental impact.

Abstract: We investigate the stock market response to firm disclosure of positive environmental information and the link from that information to environmental outcomes. We classify environmental media releases by informational content and value relevance, and assess the abnormal stock returns of each type of event. While announcements of future environmental activities lead to the largest favorable stock market reactions, there is no guaranteed link from this type of information to environmental outcomes. Further analysis of the abnormal returns shows that the magnitude of the stock market reaction depends on firm financial characteristics across all event types rather than on firm environmental performance. Our results indicate that the ability for voluntary environmental information disclosure to induce environmental self-regulation is limited to the extent that firms are able to follow through with their announcements of planned environmental activities.

Voluntary Environmental Programmes (VEP)

Abstract: Researchers debate whether environmental investments reduce firm value or actually improve financial performance. We provide some compelling evidence on shareholder wealth effects of membership in voluntary environmental programs (VEPs). Companies announcing membership in EPA’s Climate Leaders, a program targeting reductions in greenhouse gas emissions, experience significantly negative abnormal stock returns. The price decline is larger in firms with poor corporate governance structures, and for high market-to-book (i.e., high growth) firms. However, firms joining Ceres, a program involving more general environmental commitments, have insignificant announcement returns, as do portfolios of industry rivals. Overall, corporate commitments to reduce greenhouse gas emissions appear to conflict with firm value maximization. This has important implications for policies that rely on voluntary initiatives to address climate change. Further, we find that firms facing climate-related shareholder resolutions or firms with weak corporate governance standards – giving managers the discretion to make such voluntary environmentally responsible investment decisions – are more likely to join Climate Leaders; decisions that may result in lower firm value.

Abstract: This research utilized an event study method to assess how the stocks of publicly traded companies responded before and after announcing their partnership with the United States Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) Climate Leaders program. Although the stocks exhibited an average non‐significant positive abnormal return of 0.56% on the day of the announcement, the cumulative abnormal returns for the stock prices of the firms for two of the three event windows showed statistically significant negative returns. These results suggest that these firms’ public announcements of joining the USEPA Climate Leaders partnership did not have a positive impact on stock performance. While no immediate financial benefit was found in this research, the practices implemented by these firms to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions may still bode well for long‐term corporate earnings and attractiveness to investors.

Abstract: This paper presents the first empirical test of the financial impacts of institutional investor activism towards climate change. Specifically, we study the conditions under which share prices are increased for the Financial Times (FT) Global 500 companies due to participation in the Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP), a consortium of institutional investors with $57 trillion in assets. We find no systematic evidence that participation, in and of itself, increased shareholder value. However, by making use of Russia’s ratification of the Kyoto Protocol, which caused the Protocol to go into effect, we find that companies’ CDP participation increased shareholder value when the likelihood of climate change regulation rose. We estimate the total increase in shareholder value from CDP participation at $8.6 billion, about 86% of the size of the carbon market in 2005. Our findings suggest that institutional investor activism towards climate change can increase shareholder value when the external business environment becomes more climate conscious.

Abstract: The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) employs voluntary programs as a policy instrument to encourage firms to go beyond mere compliance with laws and regulations in protecting the environment. Based on event study methodology, this paper tests for abnormal stock market returns from membership in the National Environmental Performance Track (NEPT) program. The analysis shows that there is strong evidence that acceptance of a facility to the NEPT adds significantly to the market capitalization of the accepted firms. Corporate social responsibility can be financially rewarding for firms and voluntary programs of the EPA can be an effective complement to performance‐based regulatory instruments.

Abstract: Despite the importance of the Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP), the question of how firms’ voluntary carbon disclosure influences capital markets and shareholder value remains unanswered. Using the event study methodology with a sample of firms from the CDP Korea 2008 and 2009, this paper investigates market responses to firms’ voluntary carbon information disclosure. The results suggest that the market is likely to respond negatively to firms’ carbon disclosure, implying that investors tend to perceive carbon disclosure as bad news and thus are concerned about potential costs facing firms for addressing global warming. In addition, the study examines the moderating effect of frequent carbon communication on the relationship between carbon disclosure and shareholder value. The results suggest that a firm can mitigate negative market shocks from its carbon disclosure by releasing its carbon news periodically through the media in advance of its carbon disclosure.

Abstract: Purpose – Multinationals are increasingly pressured by stakeholders to commit to environmental sustainability that exceeds their own firm borders. As a result, multinationals have started to commit to environmental supply chain sustainability programs (ESCSPs). However, little is known about whether such commitment is rewarded or punished by financial markets, and if the stock price reaction differs depending on the type of firm that commits to such a program. This paper aims to discuss these issues. Design/methodology/approach – The authors conduct an event study followed by two-equation Heckman modeling, using a sample of 66 multinationals that committed to the ESCSP of the Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP). Findings – It was found that generally there is a marginally significant negative stock price reaction to announcement of participation in this ESCSP (i.e. -0.8 percent, po0.10). However, the authors argue and show that firms in industries that have historically faced more pressure from consumers are less likely to announce their participation. If one corrects for this industry bias, then the negative stock price reaction is even more pronounced (i.e. -3.2 percent, po0.05). Research limitations/implications – Using objective data, the study provides insights into the shareholder wealth effects of firms that commit to the ESCSP of the CDP. As such, the sample does not cover firms that set up their own ESCSPs. Practical implications – The paper is valuable for practitioners and investors who are interested in finding out if participation in ESCSPs is financially attractive, and for (governmental) policy makers who may want to be assured that there is sufficient incentive for firms to pursue environmental supplychain sustainability. Originality/value – This is the first paper that captures how financial markets react to announcements of ESCSPs.

Abstract: This study finds that investors price firms’ greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions as a negative component of equity value, and this valuation discount does not differ between firms that voluntarily disclose to the Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP) and nondisclosing firms. We derive the GHG emissions for nondisclosers from an estimation model that incorporates firm characteristics and industry. The finding that investors view CDP amounts and estimates of emissions as equally value-relevant suggests that equity values reflect GHG information from channels other than the CDP. An event study of investors’ response to emission-related information in firms’ 8-K filings further supports this finding. Economically, our results suggest that, for the median S&P 500 firm, GHG emissions impose a market-implied equity discount of $79 per ton, representing about one-half of 1 percent of market capitalization.

Green Investment

Abstract: This study examines the impact of voluntary positive corporate social actions on shareholder wealth. After performing an event analysis, the announcement of corporate donations is found to have a significant positive effect on stock prices. Firms producing environmentally-friendly products exhibit a large significant positive reaction on Day 0, however no significant returns accrue over the cumulative time period from -5 to +5. No other announcement of a voluntary corporate social action is found to have a significant impact on shareholder wealth, specifically those firms engaged in recycling or social policy issues.

Abstract: We investigate the influence of environmental initiatives on firms’ anticipated economic performance using an event study methodology. Framing our arguments within an organizational reputation framework, we propose that, due to potential positive effects of these initiatives on firm performance (through increases in reputation), shareholders will react positively to announced environmental initiatives. Contrary to our hypothesis, we found no overall effect of announced environmental initiatives on stock returns. However, our findings indicate that reactions to product-driven initiatives are significantly different than reactions to process-driven ones.

Abstract: Event study methodology is used to examine the wealth effects, or stock price reactions, to corporate announcements of green marketing activities. Two procedures for measuring stock price reactions and two different tests of significance are used in the study. The results for the sample of 73 firms show that the market value for the average firm in the sample declines by 3.14% during the period from 10 days prior to 10 days after the news is announced. Announcements related to green products, recycling efforts, and appointments of environmental policy managers result in insignificant stock price reactions. However, announcements for green promotional efforts produce significantly negative stock price reactions. Sampling by financial and operational characteristics shows that firms with higher growth in earnings, larger firms, and firms with higher advertising-to-sales ratios experience relatively less negative stock price reactions. Managerial implications of the results and directions for future research are also presented.

Abstract: This study examines share price effects of environmental investments using data from the Finnish forest industry from 1970 to 1996. The results indicate that the instantaneous market reaction is negative, and that the larger the investment, the larger the fall in prices. However, contrary to the view that corporate actions have a permanent effect on firm value, we observe rapid price recovery after the instantaneous negative reaction. This may support a hypothesis that environmental investments create goodwill for the investing firms and are thus not negative net present value investments. Unexpectedly, we find that the instantaneous negative market reaction was stronger in the most recent sample years. Explanations for this finding relate to the slowness of institutional change within the financial community as well as to the growing share of international investors seeking short‐term holding gains. In conclusion, it appears that not only finance theory but also notions from institutional theory and corporate environmental management literature are needed to explain stock price behaviour in conjunction with environmental investments.

Abstract: This paper investigates how stock prices respond to the release of the environmental management ranking by using a standard event study methodology. Examining top 30 manufacturing companies in the environmental management ranking published by Nihon Keizai Shimbun (Nikkei newspaper) from 1998 to 2005, we find that stock prices on the whole did not respond significantly to the release of the ranking within a three-day event window. Moreover, stock prices of companies that experienced a downgrade increased significantly, while those that experienced an upgrade decreased significantly.

Abstract: This work adds to the recent debate in corporate social responsibility (CSR) and its effects on performance and firm value. By analysing Spanish companies participating in the IBEX-35 stock-exchange index, this paper empirically tests whether there is a significant price reaction to environmental friendly announcements. Using event studies methodology, the distinction among sectors allows for a better understanding of investors reaction. Results show first, that investors do act in response to this kind of practices and second, that the sign of their reaction depends crucially on the business of the firm and the sector where it operates. In this sense, results may help in reconciling the opposite views regarding the effects of CSR policies.

Abstract: Although firms have been taking green supply chain management (GSCM) initiatives, it is not known whether they create value for firms. We analyze 104 announcements related to GSCM using an event study, and determine what causes statistically significant gain in stock prices for these firms. Manufacturing firms, firms with high R&D expenses, and early adopters show a strong increase in stock prices on the day of the announcement. At the same time, small firms, firms not well-known for taking green initiatives, as well as firms that are low in growth potential considerably surprise the market when they make such announcements.

Abstract: We study the stock market reaction to announcements of global green vehicle innovation over a 14‐year time span (1996–2009) using the event study methodology. We document that the stock market generally reacts positively to automakers’ announcements of environmental innovations, consistent with prior research on the wealth effects of innovation announcements. Our results indicate that crucial green product development decisions such as innovation type and market segment choices exert direct influence on a firm’s market value. These results hold after controlling for firm size, leverage, profitability, R&D intensity, and oil price changes.

Abstract: When do firms derive value from investing in environmental initiatives (CEIs)? We examine stock market responses to the announcements of 183 CEIs by 71 Fortune 500 firms during the period 2002 to 2008. We find that the stock market reacts positively to such announcements but does not react differently to CEIs concerning a firm’s inputs, throughputs, and outputs. We also find that there is an inverted U-shaped relationship between the timing of a CEI and the abnormal stock market return following its announcement. Overall, this study shows that timing is a relevant explanatory factor for the value firms derive from investing in environmental action.

Abstract: Although a number of studies have been conducted on the relationship between environmental management and firm performance ,most of them are conducted in the Western context. Due to the unique social and economic environments in China, the performance implications of environmental management might be quite different in the Chinese context. We examine the impact of corporate environmental initiatives (CEIs) on the market value of firms in China. We find that, in contrast to the findings in the Western context, Chinese investors react negatively to CEI announcements. The negative reaction is more significant when the announcements are related to processes rather than products, and for state-owned enterprises rather than privately-owned corporations. However, there is no difference whether the CEI is self-declared or third-party endorsed. Overall, our research indicates that Chinese investors consider CEIs to be in conflict with shareholder interest. Inparticular, CEIs in state-owned enterprises might be considered by investors as signals that firms need to sacrifice profits to shoulder more social responsibility.

Abstract: Many businesses increasingly use strategic partnerships to manage corporate environmental agendas. However, how value is created in green partnerships remains largely unexplored. To address this gap, the authors examine the effects of announcements of green partnerships (marketing versus technology) on shareholder value. It is argued that in green partnerships firms leverage marketing and technology-related capabilities for value-enhancing purposes. The results show that announcements of green marketing partnerships have an immediate positive and significant effect on shareholder value, whereas announcements of green technology partnerships produce an immediate negative and significant effect. Nevertheless, green technology partnerships can accrue positive returns, but over a longer-term(1 year) period. In dirtier industries, it is more difficult to generate positive returns to green partnerships. Counterintuitively, though, in highpolluting industries, firms having a history of positive environmental performance experience lower financial gains from announcements of green partnerships than firms that were less environmentally responsible in the past.

Abstract: To avoid catastrophic climate change risk, the case for fossil fuel reserves not being burned has become stronger. This is particularly the case for coal, as the highest emitter of CO2 per unit of energy, with large portions of coal reserves likely to become stranded assets, posing significant risk to investors. Technology in the past has come to the rescue, so investor valuations may depend on perceptions for the success of technology in reducing stranded asset risk. We examine whether coal company shareholders perceive coal as a technologically stranded asset by studying shareholder reactions to news about CCS (carbon capture and sequestration) technology breakthroughs and setbacks. We find significant positive reactions to CCS breakthroughs, but no reaction for setbacks. This suggests investors have embedded expectations of stranded asset risk into their valuations, but also recognize the significance of successful CCS technology development and deployment for the economic prospects of the coal industry.

Abstract: Firms around the globe have enhanced their green credentials as a means of increasing competitiveness and improving firm performance. The literature on firms and news suggests that stock prices of most firms tends to be very responsive to news items in the short-term. However, many green companies make investments or are working in industries where the payoffs are likely to be obtained more in the medium-term. There is therefore good reason to believe that the stock prices of these firms would be less responsive to daily news items. Using a database of green firms in emerging markets, the study finds that news can impact on daily returns of green companies. However, the effects of this news does not seem to be long-lasting and was not observed across the majority of firms considered.