Date of Award




Document Type

Master's Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)


Department of Sociology

Content Description

1 online resource (i, 58 pages) : black and white illustrations.

Dissertation/Thesis Chair

James Zetka

Committee Members

Elizabeth Popp-Berman, Scott South


Lobbying, Profit, Rate of return, Business and politics

Subject Categories



The effect of lobbying expenditures on firm profitability has been frequently examined but prior research has yielded inconclusive and contradictory findings. This study examines the effect of annual lobbying expenditures by Fortune 500 firms from 1998 to 2011 on Return on Equity (ROE) and Return on Assets (ROA), controlling for the effects of firm, time, industry, and market profitability. The analysis finds no evidence of a relationship between lobbying expenditures and ROA and a weak, negative relationship between lobbying expenditures and ROE. The seemingly contradictory negative relationship between lobbying and ROE may be due to the tendency for large firms that lobby to have lower cash flows due to leverage. Lobbying may also serve as a preemptive measure that firms use to stem additional, future losses.

Included in

Sociology Commons