The Impact of Wide Social Media Dissemination of Disclosures on Information Asymmetry: A New Zealand Context
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The type and number of social media platforms a company uses in their corporate disclosures has received little examination in the disclosure literature. The disclosure literature has noted the differences between social media platforms (Müller, Schneiders, & Schäfer, 2016; Soo Jung & Hadley, 2014). There however has been few studies on the impact this difference has on the information environment of companies. Further, there has been little effort to understand how the number of social media platforms used impacts on the information environment of companies. Based on a sample of 92 social media users and 58 non-users of social media listed on the NZSX and using the Investor Recognition Hypothesis, this study examines the effects of social media dissemination within the New Zealand context. Previous research in other countries has established that social media dissemination reduces information asymmetry, as it widely spreads the news (Blankespoor, Miller, & White, 2014b; Prokofieva, 2015b). The results confirm these findings, even when the public announcements are available on the NZX Material Announcements Platform (MAP). Comparing the main social media platforms used in New Zealand (Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and YouTube), the findings show that LinkedIn was the only one negatively associated with information asymmetry. The study also concludes that as New Zealand companies continue to adopt and expand social media use, having more than one social media platform does not significantly affect information asymmetry.