Asia Pacific Journal of Management

, Volume 29, Issue 4, pp 949–964

Corruption and subsidiary profitability: US MNC subsidiaries in the Asia Pacific region


DOI: 10.1007/s10490-010-9214-8

Cite this article as:
Lee, SH. & Hong, S.J. Asia Pac J Manag (2012) 29: 949. doi:10.1007/s10490-010-9214-8


Would multinational corporation (MNC) subsidiaries be more profitable in host countries where corruption is less severe? Would MNC subsidiaries be more profitable in less corrupt countries if they focus on local sales? This paper examines the impact of the level of corruption on the profitability of US MNCs in the Asia Pacific region. Using foreign direct investment (FDI) data archived by the US Bureau of Economic Analysis and corruption data reported by the World Bank, we find that MNC subsidiaries located in countries with a lower level of corruption are more profitable. In addition, MNC subsidiaries with a greater focus on local sales are more profitable when the corruption level is low. This study contributes to the literature by showing that when local sales are important to MNC subsidiaries, a lower level of corruption by host countries positively affects the profitability of the MNC subsidiaries.


Corruption Multinational corporation (MNC) Institutional environment Subsidiary Profitability 

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Management, SM43University of Texas at DallasRichardsonUS

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