#MeToo: Sexual Harassment and Company Value

Mads Borelli-Kjaer, Laurids Moehl Schack, Ulf Nielsson*

*Corresponding author af dette arbejde

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We identify the impact of reported sexual harassment on firm value through the use of a unique hand-collected sample consisting of around 200 incidents that all include novel event- and firm-specific characteristics. The average effect of a sexual harassment scandal is significantly negative and robust, with around 1.5% abnormal decrease in market value over the event day and the following trading day. In the cross section, the effect is considerably amplified by the involvement of a CEO in the scandal, high news coverage and number of accusers, while firms' self-disclosure of misconduct mitigates the effect. The average magnitude of impact is unchanged before and after the #MeToo movement, but the frequency of scandals in the media translates to a four-fold increase in the risk of becoming embroiled in a scandal. Proxies of public sentiment rather than direct penalties and loss of productivity are found to correlate with the magnitude of impact.
TidsskriftJournal of Corporate Finance
Antal sider36
StatusUdgivet - apr. 2021

Bibliografisk note

Published online: 6. Januar 2021.


  • Corporate scandals
  • Sexual harassment
  • Company value
  • MeToo