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A Note on Return on Foreign Assets and Foreign Presence for UK Multinationals


  • *The authors thank the Economic and Social Research Council, and Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council, for funding.


Within the context of the international business literature on multinationality and performance we develop new data on the foreign presence and performance of large UK multinational enterprises (MNEs). There are 32 UK MNEs for which we can obtain data on both their degree of multinationality (measured by the ratio of foreign to total (F/T) sales) and their performance. Here, in addition to the traditional overall performance of the firm, shown as return on total assets, we use new data on the return on foreign assets (ROFA). We conduct analytical work to show the positioning of the UK MNEs in the ROFA and F/T sales space and provide regression results showing a linear relationship between multinationality and performance, using the new ROFA metric.