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Overconfident managers and external financing choice

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Abstract

This study examines the relationship between managerial overconfidence and corporate financing decisions by constructing proxies for managerial overconfidence based on the track records of earnings forecasts in Japanese listed firms. We find that managers have the stable tendency to forecast overly upward earnings compared to actual ones and that their upward bias decreases the probability of issuing equity in the public market by about 4.7 percent per one standard error, which economically has the strongest impact on financing decisions. This tendency is observed when we employ alternative measures for managerial overconfidence and other model specifications. However, in private placements, the choice to offer equity is not always avoided by managers. This implies that managers place private equity with the expectation of the certification effect. Copyright © 2010 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

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