Distracted institutional shareholders and debt maturity

Adrian Wai Kong CHEUNG*, Joye KHOO, Rui WANG

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Journal PublicationsJournal Article (refereed)peer-review


We examine whether institutional shareholders’ distraction affects corporate debt maturity decisions. We find that firms with distracted shareholders are associated with lengthened debt maturity. The effect becomes stronger for firms with high information asymmetry or those with high levels of financial constraint. When distraction is high and debt maturity is low, firms hold more cash and use that cash in value-destroying acquisitions. This supports the prevalence of agency problems when institutional shareholders are distracted. The impact of distraction is persistent and affects the debt maturity decision in the future. Our findings are robust to endogeneity and other concerns.
Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Financial Research
Publication statusPublished - 14 Jun 2024

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