The purpose of this paper is to investigate the impact of voluntary disclosure about corporate social responsibility (CSR) on firm’s financial performance. First, a state of the art about corporate social responsibility and social reporting is presented. After that, the problems of measurement of CSR are indicated and the hypotheses are proposed.
In the empirical analysis, regression models are developed to test the impact of social reporting on return on assets (ROA) and return on equity (ROE), over a period of 11 years from 2000 to 2010 for 201 big French companies. The results showed that there is no significant relation between CSR disclosure and financial performance for French companies, but a positive effect of time on this relation is discerned when there is a lag of one year for the observations. The contribution of this work to the CSR literature is the elucidation of temporal impact of social and environmental disclosure on firm’s value.