Financing Investment: The Choice between Bonds and Bank Loans


Management Science


Departments: Finance

Keywords: Debt structure, Capital structure, Investment, Credit supply, Competition,

We build a model of investment and financing decisions to study the choice between bonds and bank loans in a firm's marginal financing decision and its effects on corporate investment. We show that firms with more growth options, higher bargaining power in default, operating in more competitive product markets, and facing lower credit supply are more likely to issue bonds. We also demonstrate that, by changing the cost of financing, these characteristics affect the timing of investment. We test these predictions using a sample of U.S. firms and present new evidence that supports our theory

Herding and Social Media Word-of-Mouth: Evidence from Groupon

X. LI, L. WU

MIS Quarterly


Departments: Information Systems and Operations Management, GREGHEC (CNRS)

Keywords: Herding, word-of-mouth, social media, interaction effect, complementarity

Modern online retailing practices provide consumers with new types of real-time information that can potentially increase demand. In particular, showing past product sales information can reduce uncertainty about product quality, inducing consumers to herd. This effect could be particularly salient for experience goods due to their inherent high uncertainty about product quality. Social media word-of-mouth (WOM) can increase product awareness as product information spreads via social media, increasing demand directly and also amplifying existing quality signals such as past sales. This study examines the mechanisms behind the strategy of facilitating herding and the strategy of integrating social media platforms to understand the potential complementarities between the two strategies. We conduct empirical analysis using data from which sells goods in a fast cycle format of “daily deals”. We find that facilitating herding and integrating social media platforms are complements in generating sales, supporting that it is beneficial to combine the two strategies on social media-driven platforms. Furthermore, we find that herding is more salient for experience goods, consistent with our hypothesized mechanisms, while the effect of social media WOM does not differ between experience goods and search goods

How Do Firm Political Connections Impact Foreign Acquisitions? The Effects of Decision Makers’ Political and Firm Embeddedness


Global Strategy Journal


Departments: Strategy & Business Policy, GREGHEC (CNRS)

Keywords: political connections, non-market strategies, foreign acquisitions, French firms, mental models

Research summary: We examine how firm political connections established through the political embeddedness of senior decision makers affect firms’ foreign acquisition strategy. We argue that such political embeddedness affects the mental models of decision makers and, in turn, influences their preferences for particular strategies. We propose that political embeddedness leads to the formation of mental models that favor foreign acquisition strategies. We further argue that the firm embeddedness of politically-embedded decision makers alters their mental models, thereby mitigating their inclination for such strategies. We find evidence consistent with our mental models explanation using a sample of foreign acquisitions made by French publicly-traded firms during the 2009-2014 period. Overall, this study contributes to a better understanding of the mechanisms through which political connections impact global strategy. Managerial summary: We investigate how firm political connections affect firms’ foreign acquisition strategies. We argue that when firms have top decision makers with close connections to the government, they will make more foreign acquisitions. We further argue that this inclination towards foreign acquisitions is primarily driven by non-executive board members, with politically-connected executives appearing to be more reluctant to engage in such strategies. We find evidence consistent with these ideas when examining foreign acquisitions made by French publicly-traded firms managed by graduates of the prestigious ENA government school, which trains many government and senior civil servants in France

How Much Do Means Tested Benefits Reduce the Demand for Annuities?


Journal of Pension Economics and Finance


Departments: Finance, GREGHEC (CNRS)

Keywords: Means-Tested Benefits, Occupational Pension, Annuity

We analyze the effect of means-tested benefits on annuitization decisions using an administrative dataset of pension wealth cash-out choices. Availability of means-tested payments creates an incentive to cash out pension wealth for low and middle income earners, instead of taking the annuity. Agents trade off the advantages from annuitization, receiving longevity risk insurance, to the disadvantages, giving up “free” wealth in the form of means-tested supplemental income. Our life-cycle model demonstrates that the availability of means-tested benefits substantially reduces the desire to annuitize especially for low and intermediate levels of pension wealth. In our empirical analysis we show that the model’s predicted fraction of retirees choosing the annuity is able to match the annuitization pattern of occupational pension wealth observed in Switzerland

Impact of Average Rating on Social Media Endorsement: The Moderating Role of Rating Dispersion and Discount Threshold


Information Systems Research


Departments: Information Systems and Operations Management, GREGHEC (CNRS)