Disciplinary Takeovers and Industry Effects
This paper presents a disciplinary explanation for some seemingly paradoxical stylized facts from the takeover literature. Most notable among these are: (1) hostile takeovers are predicted better by industry-wide than by firm-specific performance failures; and (2) gains from a successful bid for a specific firm extend to other firms in the same industry. Our explanation is based on the idea that managerial incentives based on relative performance evaluation may induce an inefficient industry-wide equilibrium in which all firms underperform with respect to a value-maximizing firm, but no firm underperforms with respect to the industry average. A takeover can serve as a means to destroy such an inefficient industry-wide incentive equilibrium.