Political connection and managerial entrenchment: evidence from CEO turnovers in China
Firms seek political connection by hiring politicians and ex-bureaucrats as top executives in China, especially in privately controlled firms. One unintended consequence of establishing political connection is management entrenchment. Political connected CEOs have smaller equity holding than CEOs without political background. Political connection significantly lowers the CEO turnover probability and turnover-performance sensitivity. Firm performance improves after political connected CEOs are replaced, particularly if replaced by new ones not politically connected. Overall, our findings suggest that political connection in association with management entrenchment destroys shareholder value, harms firm performance, and exacerbates corporate governance in emerging economies.
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