A Different Take on CSR Disclosure and Political Spending
by Robert Kropp
A report from two University of California professors determines that political contributions by
corporate managers, when viewed through the lens of corporate social responsibility disclosures,
can lead to excess stock returns, especially in states that vote Democratic.
The most expensive Presidential election campaign in American history ends today, when voters will
choose one of two starkly opposed paths forward for the next four years. A leading factor
contributing to the expense, of course, was the US Supreme Court's controversial Citizens United
decision in early 2010, which established the concept of corporate personhood and opened the
floodgates for the political spending that occurred this year.
What has been decried as the
abandonment of judicial restraint by the Roberts court is one of the most critical issues of
today's election. Four of the sitting Supreme Court judges are over the age of 70, and there is a
distinct likelihood that the winner will reshape the Court for a generation to come.