Family Ownership Influence on Cost Elasticity

G Siciliano, Weiss Dan

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal


This study explores the relation between family ownership and cost elasticity. Using a sample of 1746 European firms, we first find that family ownership, a prevalent ownership type with unique characteristics, is associated with greater cost elasticity. Further, we use four empirical settings to increase our confidence that a higher cost elasticity is attributable to family ownership. We also document that family firms achieve greater operating cost elasticity primarily through modifying SG&A costs in response to changing sales, but not by hiring or firing employees. These findings extend prior studies on ownership effects on cost structures, suggesting that family ownership matters in understanding firms’ cost elasticity choices.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages31
JournalThe European Accounting Review
Early online date24 Aug 2023
Publication statusPublished - 2023


  • family business
  • Cost behaviour
  • Cost elasticity
  • Family firms
  • Ownership

Indexed by

  • SSCI
  • ABDC-A*


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