A Behavioural Appraisal of Regulatory Financial Reforms and Implications for Corporate Management

Samah El Hajjar, Bartosz Gebka , Darren Duxbury*, Chen Su

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)
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Financial markets play a vital role in shaping corporate behaviour, impacting corporate financial decisions ranging from investment and mergers/acquisitions to payout policies and management renumeration. Financial markets, however, are prone to irrational sentiments to trade, driving prices away from fundamental values, with the potential to distort corporate decisions and, hence, corporate efficiency. It is important, therefore, to examine the extent to which regulatory reforms help mitigate the influence of irrationality in financial markets. To this end, we examine the consequences of the mandatory adoption of International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS) in Europe through the behavioural lens of investor sentiment. In country-level analyses, we find the impact of irrational sentiment on stock markets to have significantly diminished post-IFRS. In global pooled analyses, we compare the change in the sentiment–return relationship in countries adopting IFRS with the change in a set of non-adopting countries to account for stock market trends: weakening of the impact of irrational sentiment on stock prices is greater in IFRS-adopting countries. Results are robust to a battery of alternative tests and explanations. We provide strong support, therefore, for the success of IFRS in its aim of improving market efficiency, with important implications for corporate management.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)415-433
Number of pages19
JournalBritish Journal of Management
Issue number1
Early online date22 Mar 2023
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2024

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