Corporate Governance Reform under Abenomics

Author Name MIYAJIMA Hideaki (Faculty Fellow, RIETI) / SAITO Takuji (Keio University)
Creation Date/NO. October 2019 19-P-026
Research Project Frontiers in Corporate Governance Analysis
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Corporate governance reform has been one of the central issues in the "third arrow" of the Abe administration's economic revival program. The Japanese Stewardship Code was introduced in 2014, followed by the Corporate Governance Code in 2015. This study quantifies how the reform changed the corporate governance of Japanese firms. First, we examine the changes in institutional ownership, cross-holdings and board structure following the reforms. Then, we study whether changes in ownership structure and board structure affect firm behavior and performance. We find that the introduction of the Stewardship Code is associated with more institutional ownership especially in mid-sized firms. Firms with few outside directors increased the number of outside directors to follow the Corporate Governance Code. However, the increase in institutional ownership and outside directors did not promote risk taking behavior or improve firm performance.