Does Shareholder Litigation Risk Cause Public Firms to Delist? Evidence from Securities Class Action Lawsuits

Jonathan Brogaard, Nhan Le, Duc Duy Nguyen, and Vathunyoo Sila

♦ Using three exogenous shocks to ex ante litigation risk, including federal judge ideology and two influential judicial precedents, we find that lower shareholder litigation risk reduces a firm’s propensity to delist from the U.S. stock markets. The effect is at least partially driven by indirect costs of litigation and that being a private firm can significantly reduce the threat of litigation. Overall, the results suggest that mitigating excessive litigation costs for public firms is crucial to ensure the continued vibrancy of the U.S. stock market.

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