The rise of intangible assets in size and contribution to corporate growth over the past quarter century was accompanied by a steep increase in the rate and scope of patenting. Consequently, many patent‐rich companies, particularly in the science‐based and high‐tech industries, are extensively engaged in the licensing and sale of patents. We examine various valuation and disclosure aspects of the outcome of patent licensing—royalty income. Our findings indicate the following: (1) royalty income is highly relevant to securities valuation, (2) the intensity of royalty income provides investors with an important signal about the quality and prospects of firms' R&D expenditures, and (3) a substantial number of companies engaged in patent licensing do not disclose royalty income in financial reports.

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