Is it the Pursuit of Market Standing?

A long-standing argument in the non-market literature is that corporations engage in philanthropy to increase their market performance. The strength of this motive is inversely proportional to market standing. Therefore, one expectation is that low-standing organizations should donate relatively large amounts because the marginal utility of such behavior is higher for them than for higher-standing firms (Eichholtz, Kok, and Quigley, 2010; Liang and Renneboog, 2017; Muller and Kräussl, 2011; Porter and Kramer, 2002; Servaes and Tamayo, 2013). To address this potential confounder, we proxied market standing by the rank of the MNE by firm revenue the year before the disruption. Table 4 shows that the coefficient of an interaction with economic importance suggests that the associated donations from MNEs with economic importance in the affected country fall with every standard-deviation decrease in market standing. That is, large donors tend to be firms with high market standing.

Furthermore, the results for H2 provides additional evidence as MNEs with economic importance operating in concentrated markets donated greater amounts than those in fragmented markets.