Date of Award

8-7-2008

Degree Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Ph.D.

Degree Program

Financial Economics

Department

Economics and Finance

Major Professor

Wei, Peiwhang Philip

Second Advisor

Mukherjee, Tarun K.

Third Advisor

Krishnaswami, Sudha

Fourth Advisor

Naka, Atsuyuki

Fifth Advisor

Varela, Oscar

Abstract

American Depository Receipts (ADRs) represent shares of foreign firms that are issued and traded in the U.S. Since an ADR and its underlying shares represent ownership interest of the same firm, they should be perfect substitutes in a perfect market. However, market imperfections such as differences in information environment, liquidity, investment and trading restrictions, taxes, control right, corporate governance might make them less-than-perfect substitutes. These imperfections, on the other hand, also present opportunities for research. This dissertation consists of two essays on ADRs, both related to the effects of less-thanperfect information. Specifically, the first essay examines the return and volatility transfers between ADRs and their underlying home shares. Our investigation differs from the previous studies in that we cover substantially more countries and that we attempt to explain the variations in the extents of transfer effects both across firms and across countries. Various hypotheses are developed, based on the premise that barriers associated with trading, investments, and corporate governance would lower the extent or effectiveness of transfers. Overall, our empirical results support these hypotheses. The second essay takes the viewpoint of the issuing firms. Supposedly, an issuer's timing and dollar amount raised depend on the conditions of three markets: its home equity market, the U.S. equity market, and the currency market. From purely the standpoint of information accessibility, ADR issuers are likely to time their issues or set their amounts with respect to the conditions of the home equity market and/or currency market, with which they are more familiar. On the other hand, issuers typically employ the assistance of U.S. investment banks, and therefore they may be well-informed about the U.S. equity market. This is largely an empirical issue. Generally, our empirical results are mixed, but there is somewhat stronger evidence for the U.S. equity market being more important when setting the issue amount. There is also evidence that suggests regulations having influences on such activities.

Rights

The University of New Orleans and its agents retain the non-exclusive license to archive and make accessible this dissertation or thesis in whole or in part in all forms of media, now or hereafter known. The author retains all other ownership rights to the copyright of the thesis or dissertation.

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