Intangible resource values and Tobin’s Q: Evidence from the Super Bowl

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College of Business


This paper investigates the issue of intangible resource valuation, specifically quantifying brand equity, through the use of Tobin’s “q ratio”. We performed a pair-wise comparison of the q ratios for Super Bowl advertisers versus non-advertisers from 1989 to 2016 (total of 178 firms), controlling for the Standard Industrial Classification code and relative size of the firm. The findings suggest lower q ratios, i.e. lower brand equity, for those firms who chose to participate. A more detailed analysis by SIC code, along with the explanatory power of marketing theory, however, may reveal a more nuanced story to this paradox.

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Journal of Accounting and Finance