Globalization, US foreign investments and accounting standards
Purpose – This paper aims to examine the relation between the proportion of direct investment to US total – direct and portfolio – investment abroad and their country-specific determinants in developed and developing countries between 1997 and 2005, emphasizing the role of high-quality accounting standards and corporate governance. Design/methodology/approach – The study covers 46 developed and emerging market countries that are classified into four groups: Advanced, Asian, Central and Eastern European and Latin American. In order to eliminate the adverse effects of possible outliers in some observations on regression results, fixed effect robust regression (RR) techniques were conducted, in addition to fixed effect ordinary least squares (OLS) estimation using panel data. Findings – It was found that the proportion of direct investment to US total investment abroad is strongly and negatively related to both high-quality accounting standards and effective corporate governance, even after controlling for a number of variables found in previous research to be important: inflation, stock market capitalization, per capita gross domestic product, openness of destination countries’ economies and tax rates. Research limitations/implications – One major problem in international accounting research is the difficulty in obtaining of data. This problem was encountered in this study, too. Therefore, some emerging market countries are necessarily excluded from the sample. Originality/value – The main focus is the contributions of accounting standards and corporate governance to explaining tradeoffs between US direct and portfolio investment in developed and developing countries. In this sense, this is – to the authors’ knowledge – the first study in this area.
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