Empirical Essays in Corporate Finance

Over the past twenty years, write-offs have grown in popularity. With the increased usage of write-offs, it is becoming more important to understand the mechanisms behind why companies take write-offs and how write-offs affect company performance. In this paper, I examine the cross-sectional determinants of the decision to take write-offs. I use a hand-collected dataset on write-offs that is much more comprehensive than existing write-off datasets. Contrary to much hype and scandals surrounding a few write-offs, I find that quality of governance is positively related to write-off decisions in the cross-section. My results also suggest that poor governance companies wait to take write-offs until it becomes inevitable…

Author: Minnick, Kristina Leigh

Source: University of Maryland

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