Title

Business sustainability factors and stock price informativeness

Abstract

This paper investigates whether and how business sustainability performance and disclosure factors affect stock price informativeness (SPI). We find that non-financial environmental, social, and governance (ESG) sustainability performance factors are positively associated with idiosyncratic volatility (our proxy for SPI) after controlling for financial-economic performance. We further show that the association between sustainability performance factors and SPI is stronger for firms with higher sustainability disclosure. We find that the association between ESG sustainability performance factors and SPI is stronger when economic performance is weaker, suggesting that investors tend to pay more attention to ESG performance factors when firms are financially underperforming. This study shows that investors pay attention to both firm economic performance (corporate profitability and growth prospect) and ESG sustainability performance and disclosure factors, which have implications for policymakers, regulators, investors, businesses, and researchers.

Publication Title

Journal of Corporate Finance

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