The Corporate Governance of Australian Listed Construction Companies

Patrick Tait, Martin Loosemore


Abstract

This paper compares the compliance level of Australian StockExchange (ASX) listed construction and non-constructioncompanies with the ASX Corporate Governance Council (CGC)recommendations on sound corporate governance. It alsoexamines the difference in board characteristics between thetwo groups, paying particular attention to differences in boardindependence. It concludes that compared with the top 20 ASXlisted non-construction companies, listed construction companiesare less compliant overall particularly with regards to boardstructure, and have lower levels of independence both in terms ofCEO/Chairperson duality, the ratio of executive to non-executiveindependent directors and independent membership of nomination,remuneration and audit committees. These conclusions areimportant because sound corporate governance has beenassociated with higher levels of organisational resilience derivedfrom the reputational and fi nancial benefi ts of greater transparency,market value, investor attractiveness and organisationalperformance.

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