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Asian Review of Financial Research Vol.19 No.2 pp.105-153
Outside Directors and Firm Value in Korea
Chang-Soo Kim Yonsei University Wonju campus
Key Words : 사외이사제도,기업가치,초과사외이사비율,기업지배구조


This paper investigates whether outside directors enhance the firm value through improved corporate governance in Korea. Firstly, the paper examines the determinants of the size of outside directors in the board of directors. The outside directors were introduced not by the voluntary corporate participation but by the law to improve the corporate governance system in Korea. Therefore, firms are not active in appointing outside directors in their board and seem to satisfy only the minimum criteria stipulated by the law. Specifically, the outside director ratio, the excess outside director dummy and the excess outside director ratio all decrease as the board size and the firm profitability increase.7) As for the control variables, bigger firms and firms with director liability insurance seem to appoint outside directors more actively. However, big firms with the asset size of 2 trillion won or greater have smaller excess outside director ratios. It seems to be caused by the larger legal minimum of outside directors for these firms. The main empirical results show that the outside directors do not have any impact on the firm value. After controlling for other variables that may affect the firm value, we show that the outside director ratio, the excess outside director dummy, and the excess outside director ratio do not have any influence on the value of the firm. As for the size of the board of directors our spline regression result shows that it has a positive relationship with the firm value for the firms with the small board. But for firms with bigger board size there seems to be no relationship between the firm value and the board size. We also performed the subsample analysis based on whether the firm has the outside director candidate nomination committee, whether there are resigning outside directors, and whether there are outside directors serving more than one term, and whether there are foreign outside directors. The results show that these aspects have no influence on firm value except the case of foreign outside directors. The ratio of absence at the board meeting has also little to do with the firm value. Conclusively, the outside director system is a relatively new in Korea and it does not seem to be utilized actively by the firms so far.
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