This study examines the hitherto unexplored question of whether and how a firm's social performance influences the breadth of that firm's share ownership. We predict and find that firms with higher corporate social responsibility (CSR) ratings attract more institutional investors (especially long-term, low-stake and green institutional investors) and more individual investors. This finding is consistent with the notion that investors are more interested in firms with higher CSR ratings and thus prefer to hold stocks of such firms. We also find that firms with higher CSR ratings are associated with higher stock liquidity, lower cost of equity capital, more equity and debt issuance, and greater investment, and that sin stocks are associated with a lower investor base, which further corroborates our prediction. Our results are robust to potential endogeneity, the use of alternative model specifications, and an alternative proxy for CSR performance.
Scopus Subject Areas
- Business, Management and Accounting (miscellaneous)
- breadth of ownership
- corporate social responsibility (CSR)
- green investor
- investor base