, Volume 31, Issue 2, pp 207-218

An empirical investigation of going private decisions of U.S. firms

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According to many managers, the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002 caused the costs of being public to increase. Subsequently, following the Act, many firms went private rather than incur the costs. We investigate the differences in the financial characteristics of firms that went private between 1998 and 2003 and a control sample of firms which went public and did not go private Our results indicate that there are differences in the two groups, as well as differences in firms that went private prior to and following Sarbanes-Oxley. Taken together, our results are indicative of going private to avoid the higher costs of being public post Sarbanes-Oxley.