Research Working Paper No. 6
Can Corporate Social Responsbility Fill Institutional Voids ?

Written by Swee-Sum Lam, Weina Zhang and Christopher Yuen Kwong Chien

This study examines the relation between corporate social responsibility actions and firm value. We find that the institutional voids in the country play an important moderating role in the CSR-firm value relation. In a country with weaker institutions in terms of financial market development, economic development, and government institution development, firms have higher valuation while engaging in socially responsible actions in the environmental and social dimensions. The findings suggest that firms’ responsible actions can fill in the structural gaps in a country, the value that is recognized and appreciated by investors.

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Research Working Paper No. 5
The Mispricing of Socially Ambiguous Grey Stocks

Written by Swee-Sum Lam, Weina Zhang and Gabriel Henry Jacob

Executive Summary: The study examines how stock market prices the stocks of socially ambiguous "Grey" firms. These are firms that are socially responsible in certain corporate social responsibility (CSR) dimensions while being socially irresponsible in the same or other dimensions. Using the firm data from 1992 to 2011, we find that the "Grey" portfolio earns an annual abnormal return up to 3.6% relative to other firms. We also find that "Community" and "Environment" sub-dimensions of CSR are the main drivers for the overpricing. Overall, our results imply that "Grey" firms are paid off for doing more socially responsible actions.

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Research Working Paper No. 4
The Moderating Effect of Bureaucratic Quality on the Pricing of Policy Instability

Written by Swee-Sum Lam and Weina Zhang

Executive Summary: This study examines how the Chinese interbank lending rate and its associated volatility are affected by financial market liberalization policies. The impact of government policy change is assessed through the borrowing cost of the economy. The research methodology in this study can be more broadly applied to evaluate the economic impact of investment-related decisions.

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Research Working Paper No. 3
Does Policy Uncertainty Matter for International Equity Markets?

Written by Swee-Sum Lam and Weina Zhang

Executive Summary: This study examines how international equity markets in 49 countries are affected by global policy instability. The economic impact of government policy decisions is assessed through the amount of equity return compensations. The research methodology in this study can be more broadly applied to evaluate the impact of investment-related decisions.

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Research Working Paper No. 2
Framing the Roots of Philanthropy

Written by Swee-Sum Lam, Gabriel Henry Jacob, and David Jeremiah Seah

Executive Summary: This study examines the giving motivations of philanthropists. We find that strong religious motivation is behind the giving. Moreover, intergenerational learning prevails beyond other factors such as wealth, religious spirituality or religious affiliations. Our study contributes to the understanding of the very root of Philanthropy.

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Research Working Paper No. 1
Venture Capital Practices: Do They Matter for the Expected Performance of Social Investment Funds?

Written by Swee-Sum Lam, Siew Meng Leong, and Sze-Min Lek

Executive Summary: This exploratory study surveying social investment funds vis-à-vis green funds finds that pre-investment venture capital practices (but not post-investment ones) matter, to varying extent, for the expected performance of social investment funds.

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