Empirical Corporate Finance II

FIN540 Empirical Corporate Finance II

Spring 2024

  • Topics

    This course builds on FIN521. In FIN540, the emphasis continues to be on supporting doctoral student preparations for the second-year summer paper, and on discussions of recent research papers. Thus, FIN540 continues to emphasize a deep understanding of the nature and implications of evidence related to corporate financial transactions and investments by (primarily) publicly traded US and European firms for various hypotheses and theories in corporate finance. This includes transactions in the market for corporate control, as well as transactions in which firms raise capital, rebalance capital structure, or file for bankruptcy. As much as possible, the emphasis is on areas where the empirical evidence challenges priors based on economic theory - puzzles or paradoxes. Ultimately, the objective is to help doctoral students find areas of potential dissertation material in the area of corporate finance. You will be asked to prepare empirical analyses, read papers, and present in class.

  • Learning outcome

    Upon course completion, the candidate can:


    • Discuss and summarize important topics on the research frontier of empirical corporate finance.
    • Evaluate and critique various methods and approaches to conducting empirical research in this area.


    • Formulate hypotheses, plan and carry out empirical research within empirical corporate finance.
    • Carry out research and scholarly research work at a high international standard and be able to publish in international peer reviewed finance journals.

    General competence

    • Communicate research within empirical corporate finance, actively participate in debates about the field in national and international scholarly forums, and present his or her own research.

  • Teaching

    The course takes place over four days. Each day covers a mix of lectures and student presentations.

  • Restricted access

    • PhD candidates from NHH
    • PhD candidates from University of Bergen 
    • PhD candidates from other higher educational institutions

  • Required prerequisites

    Successful completion of FIN521 or equivalent.

  • Compulsory Activity

    Mandatory class attendance; Write-up of weekly homework assignments; Active class participation.

    Compulsory activities (work requirements) are valid for one semester after the semester they were obtained.

  • Assessment

    The final course grade is based on an individual written term paper (100%). 

    Re-take is offered the semester after the course was offered for students with valid compulsory activities (work requirements).

  • Grading Scale

    Grading scale: Pass/Fail.

  • Literature

    Selected articles from the following volumes:

    Eckbo, B. Espen (ed.), 2007, Handbook of Corporate Finance: Empirical Corporate Finance, Volume 1, (Elsevier/North-Holland Handbook of Finance Series), ISBN: 978-0-44-4508980.

    Eckbo, B. Espen (ed.), 2008, Handbook of Corporate Finance: Empirical Corporate Finance, Volume 2, (Elsevier/North-Holland Handbook of Finance Series), ISBN: 978-0-44-4530905.

    Constantinides, Geaorge M, Milton Harris and Rene Stulz (eds.), 2013, Handbook of the Economics of Finance, Volume 2A, (North-Holland Handbooks of Economics Series). ISBN: 978-0-44-453594-8.

    Lo, Andrew W. and Robert C. Merton (eds.), Annual Review of Financial Economics, Vol. 1 - 12. (Annual Reviews, Palo Alto, Calif.)

    Foundations and Trends in Finance, Vol. 1-12. (NOW Publishers, Inc.)


ECTS Credits
Teaching language

Spring. Not offered spring 2024.

Course responsible

Professor Espen B. Eckbo, Tuck School of Business, Dartmouth College (USA)