December 2006
  In this issue

Highly committed consumers likely to put up a fight for their favorite brands

Book-tax income profit disparity to receive closer review by IRS, says Fisher tax expert

Leone examines retailers' Black Friday tactics

Max M. Fisher College of Business > The Ohio State University Fisher College of Business
Highly committed consumers likely to
put up a fight for their favorite brands

Negative attacks against brands and retailers are sure to irk corporate officials. A new study has found that highly committed customers are also likely to become emotionally defensive and even have a physical reaction over disparaging comments against their favorite brands.

While previous studies have shown that zealously loyal consumers are likely to provide counterarguments, this is the first research to reveal that arousal sparked defense mechanisms, said H. Rao Unnava, the W. Arthur Cullman Professor in Marketing and co-author of the study published in the September issue of the Journal of Consumer Research.

The study’s authors found that devoted consumers resorted to counter arguments as a way to discredit the negative attacks and provide a release from the physiological arousal caused by them.

When these consumers were unable to defend their views, the emotional and physiological arousal remained high, causing them to continue to sweat and breathe rapidly, according to the study. Read More»

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Scholar Spotlight

Book-tax income profit disparity to receive closer review by IRS, says Fisher tax expert
William Raabe
The Internal Revenue Service’s computer system upgrade and a new corporate tax form will mean closer scrutiny for publicly traded companies in 2007, said William Raabe, a tax expert and a member of Fisher’s accounting faculty. The IRS will pay closer attention to the differences between how financial accounting income is reported to the Securities and Exchange Commission and taxable income is reported to the IRS.

Public companies that look successful and profitable to shareholders and the stock market, at the same time can appear to have low or negative income when it comes time to pay taxes, Raabe said.

According to the IRS, the approximate 4,200 publicly traded companies showed taxable income that was at least $160 billion less than financial accounting income for the 2004 year. This means that book income—what companies reported to Wall Street—was almost 40 percent higher than taxable income for that period, Raabe said.

“The IRS computer system is finally waking up,” Raabe said, adding that the agency now has more capacity to process a larger amount of data. Subsequently, the IRS is now requiring public companies to disclose new and more detailed information on book income. Read More »

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Leone examines retailers' Black Friday tactics
Robert P. Leone
This year’s Black Friday featured a 6 percent jump in sales over previous years, due in part to retailers that slashed prices to new lows on a small quantity of coveted items and opened their doors in the wee-hours of the morning. However, Robert P. Leone, the Berry Chair of New Technologies in Marketing, comments on the long-term pay-off to the retail sector as big box stores pushed the limits of customer loyalty by creating an e-bay environment of limited supply and high demand. Leone shared his observations on the retailer’s new strategy with Knowledge Link. Read More »

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Calendar of Events

Dean Alutto honored for developing MBA education in China
Dean Joseph A. Alutto will receive an award from China’s Ministry of Education and the Asia-Pacific MBA Association honoring him as a “Prominent Figure to China’s MBA Education” for his contribution in developing the first MBA program in China. Alutto will receive the award on Dec. 9 in Beijing during a nationally televised ceremony to air on China Central T.V. (CCTV).

In 1984, Alutto, then a dean at the State University of New York at Buffalo, founded the SUNY-Buffalo-China MBA program, established through an agreement between the U.S. Department of Commerce and the State Economic Commission of the Peoples Republic of China. The two-year MBA program was based in China and also involved bringing Chinese MBA students to the United States for part of their instruction. Chinese executives in the program acquired western management techniques and learned to apply these within the context of China’s Communist society. This was the first U.S.-accredited MBA available in China and became a model for later MBA programs offered by both U.S. and Chinese universities.

News Briefs

Andrew Karolyi, professor of finance, was quoted in the Nov. 28 edition of The Wall Street Journal article about the apprehension investors have had with foreign companies listed on United States stock markets.

Karolyi told the paper that in his own research he has been unable to relate a change in the cross-listing premium to corporate governance.

Oded Shenkar
, professor of management and human resources, was quoted in the Nov. 14 edition of the Chicago Tribune on the Chinese investment in American businesses.

Shenkar said the amount of money poured in from China last year totaled $8.84 billion in more than 50 foreign deals.

Robert P. Leone, the Berry Chair of New Technologies in Marketing, was quoted in a Nov. 17 Bloomberg story, about the economic impact of Ohio State's football game against Michigan.

Leone told the news service the game provided a merchandising heaven for local retailers and grocers joining in on Buckeye fever.

Knowledge Link is published monthly to showcase the research produced by Fisher College of Business faculty members.

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