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Research Topics in Corporate Finance
Bocconi University
PhD in Economics and Finance ∗
May 29, 2012

Professors:
Nicolas Serrano-Vallerde (until 09/12: nicolas.serrano-velarde@sbs.ox.ac.uk) Linus Siming (linus.siming@unibocconi.it)
Office hours: By appointment (Email)
Summary and aims: This Ph.D. course is designed to introduce doctoral candidates to ongoing research topics in corporate finance. This course surveys leading academic research in selected areas of corporate finance, focusing especially upon strengths and weaknesses of various research tools. Some recent working papers will be studied, in order to introduce students to the latest developments in the field and to help identify possible dissertation topics!

Pre-requisite: None
Course requirements: TBA.
Course: 2nd year Ph.D. course.
Reading Material: The course is based on articles and lecture notes. Course Secretary: TBA.



Draft - may (certainly will!) be subject to change.

1

Part 1, Siming

Recent Executive Compensation Topics, Exogenous Events, Corporate finance research can change the world • R. Rajan and J. Wulf, 2006, “Are perks purely managerial excess?” Journal of Financial Economics 79, 1-33.

• D. Yermack, 2006, “Flights of fancy: Corporate jets, CEO perquisites, and inferior shareholder returns,” Journal of Financial Economics 80, 211-242. • B. D. Nguyen and K. Meisner Nielsen, 2012, “What Death can Tell: Are Executives Paid for Their Contributions to Firm Value?”, working paper.

• D. Yermack, 1997, “Good timing: CEO stock option awards and company news announcements,” Journal of Finance 52, 449-476. • E. Lie, 2005, “On the timing of CEO stock option awards,” Management Science 51, 800-812.

• R. Heron and E. Lie, 2009, “Does backdating explain the stock price pattern around executive stock option grants?” Journal of Financial Economics 83, 271-295. Corporate scandals and reform, You can get into trouble if you misconduct • S. Kedia and T. Philippon, 2006, “The Economics of Fraudulent Accounting,” Review of Financial Studies.

• A. Agrawal and S. Chadha, 2005, “Corporate Governance and Accounting Scandals,” Journal of Law and Economics 48, 371-406.
• V. Chhaochharia and Y. Grinstein, 2007, “Corporate Governance and Firm Value - The Impact of the 2002 Governance Rules,” Journal of Finance 62, 1789-1825. • K. Guthrie, J. Sokolowsky and K-M Wan, 2012, “CEO Compensation and Board Structure Revisited”, Journal of Finance 67, 1149-1168. Social Networks in Finance, Whom you know matters

• L. Cohen, A. Frazzini, and C. Malloy, 2008, “The small world of investing: board connections and mutual fund returns”, Journal of Political Economy 116, 951-979. • L. Cohen, A. Frazzini, and C. Malloy, 2009, “Sell side school ties”, Journal of Finance 65, 1409-1437.

• K. Shue, 2011, “Executive Networks and Firm Policies: Evidence from the Random Assignment of MBA Peers”, Chicago Booth Research Paper No. 11-46. • T. Ferguson and H.-J. Voth, 2008, “Betting on Hitler - the value of political connections in Nazi Germany”, Quarterly Journal of Economics 123, 101-137. 1

• F. Braggion, 2011, “Managers and (secret) social networks: the influence of the Freemasonry on firm performance”, Journal of the European Economic Association 9, 1053-1081. • L. Siming, 2012, “Your former employees matter”, working paper. Incentives under private or public ownership

• J. Karpoff, 2001, “Public Versus Private Initiative in Arctic Exploration: The Effects of Incentives and Organizational Structure”, Journal of Political Economy 109:1: 38-78. • R. S. Harris, T. Jenkinson and S. N. Kaplan: “Private Equity Performance: What Do We Know?”, NBER Working Paper No. 17874

2

2

Part 2, Serrano-Velarde

Catch Me If You Can: Endogeneity and Self-Selection in Corporate Finance • The fundamental problem of causal inference;
• Causality in the regression framework;
• Do you speak IV?
Reading Material:
Angrist and Pischke (2008), “Mostly Harmless Econometrics”; Lalonde...
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