Business Implications of the Tiger Woods Scandal.

Business Implications of the Tiger Woods Scandal.

Tiger Woods scandal cost shareholders up to $12 billion

Tue Dec 29, 2009 2:26pm EST

MIAMI (Reuters) - The sex scandal that engulfed Tiger Woods may have cost shareholders of companies endorsed by the world's No. 1 golfer up to $12 billion in losses, according to a study by two economics professors from the University of California, Davis.

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The study, released on Monday by researchers Victor Stango and Christopher Knittel, gave an estimate for damage to the market value of Woods' main sponsors caused by revelations of alleged extramarital affairs that surfaced after he was involved in a minor car accident outside his Florida home on November 27.

"We estimate that shareholders of Tiger Woods' sponsors lost $5-12 billion after his car accident, relative to shareholders of firms that Mr. Woods does not endorse," the researchers wrote, adding that millions of shareholders were affected.

"Our analysis makes clear that while having a celebrity of Tiger Woods' stature as an endorser has undeniable upside, the downside risk is substantial, too," Stango, a professor at the UC Davis Graduate School of Management, said in a statement released along with the study.

Woods, believed to be the world's wealthiest athlete who was estimated to earn about $100 million a year in endorsement deals before his troubles, confessed on December 11 to "infidelity" to his Swedish wife Elin Nordegren. He announced he would take an indefinite break from golf to save his marriage.

Some of the star golfer's main commercial sponsors have backed away from him as a result of the scandal. Others, while standing by him, have said they are evaluating their future relationship.


In their study, the two professors said they looked at stock market returns for the 13 trading days after November 27, the date of the car incident that ignited the Woods scandal.

They compared returns for Woods' sponsors...

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