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Journal of Economic Integration 2022 March;37(1) :54-92.
DOI: https://doi.org/10.11130/jei.2022.37.1.54
Investment in ESG Projects and Corporate Performance of Multinational Companies

Victoria CherkasovaIrina Nenuzhenko 

National Research University Higher School of Economics (NRU HSE), Russia
Corresponding Author: Victoria Cherkasova ,Email: vcherkasova@hse.ru
Copyright ©2022 Journal of Economic Integration
ABSTRACT
This study investigates whether investing in environmental, social, and governance (ESG) projects boosts corporate financial performance. It also examines whether these projects trigger the company’s default due to the high costs of such projects, depending on whether the firm is multinational and its headquarter region. To obtain robust results, we conduct the examination separately for seven regions: North America, Latin America, Western Europe, Eastern Europe, Middle East and Africa, emerging Asia, and Developed Asia. We examine firm-level indicators of 1,249 companies and are headquartered in different regions for 2011-2019. We find that the company’s headquarter region influences the interrelationship between financial performance and ESG activities. The most successful companies in ESG development are international companies and those headquartered in developing or Developed Asia or North America. Meanwhile, Latin American firms, both local and multinational, experience significant challenges during the implementation of ESG initiatives.

JEL Classification
F21: International Investment; Long Term Capital Movements
F23: Multinational Firms; International Business
F30: General
G17: Financial Forecasting and Simulation
G 30:
G39: Other
Keywords: ESG projects | international companies | financial performance | default likelihood | headquarters
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