This study investigates the impact of the SEC’s regulatory cooperation and enforcement on the corporate social responsibility (CSR) reporting practices of U.S.-listed foreign firms using a country’s Multilateral Memorandum of Understanding (MMoU) signing as a catalyst. The MMoU, a cooperative agreement among global securities regulators, enhances the SEC’s ability to engage in cross-border enforcement actions in collaboration with foreign counterparts. Our findings reveal a significant enhancement in both the quantity and quality of CSR reporting among U.S.-listed foreign firms after their home country signs the MMoU. This improvement sets them apart from their non-U.S.-listed counterparts in the same foreign location. Notably, this positive change is more pronounced among foreign firms from signatory countries with weak country-level institutions. This study contributes to the understanding of how regulatory changes, specifically MMoU adoption, influence CSR reporting, emphasizing the strategic role it plays for firms in the face of heightened regulatory cooperation and enforcement.
Data Availability: Data subject to third-party restrictions.
JEL Classifications: M41; G18; P48; G32.