R&D Investment Smoothing and Corporate Diversification


We estimate dynamic R&D investment models in publicly traded Japanese manufacturing firms over 2001-2009. Splitting into two subsamples by the degree of corporate diversification, we provide evidence that less-diversified firms have an increased tendency to smooth R&D but more-diversified firms don’t do it. To clarify the causes behind corporate diversification, we also turn our eyes on the effect of financial liquidity or share ownership structure, showing that financially unconstrained firms tend to smooth R&D investment. We, furthermore, provide evidence that corporate diversification doesn’t improve financial liquidity in financially constrained firms, but deteriorates financial liquidity in some financially unconstrained firms.

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