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Mergers and Long-Term Corporate Performance: Evidence from Cross-Border Bank Acquisitions


  • This paper has benefited from the comments of two anonymous reviewers and especially from the detailed comments of the editor. Naturally, all remaining errors are the sole responsibility of the authors.


We provide evidence on operating performance changes at a sample of U.S. banks acquired by non-U.S. banking organizations over the 1980–2001 period. Our sample allows us to compare directly the preacquisition performance of the targets with their postacquisition performance, a comparison that has not been possible in prior studies. We find that these cross-border acquisitions produce improved target performance. Cash flow profitability at the target increases, labor utilization improves, and loan losses do not rise. We also find evidence that the improvement in target operating performance primarily takes place for those acquisitions that occur following passage of the Reigle–Neal interstate branching legislation.