Advanced Search
MyIDEAS: Login

When did Ownership Separate from Control? Corporate Governance in the Early Nineteenth Century

Contents:

Author Info

  • HILT, ERIC

Abstract

This paper analyzes the ownership and governance of the business corporations of New York State in the 1820s. Using a new dataset collected from the manuscript records of New York's 1823 capital tax, and from the charters of the corporations, I analyze the ownership structures of the firms, and investigate the degree to which ownership was separated from control at the time. In contrast to Berle and Means's account of the development of the corporation, the results indicate that many of the firms were dominated by large shareholders, who were represented on the firms' boards, and held sweeping power to utilize the firms' resources for their own benefit. The oppression of minority shareholders was a significant problem in early corporate governance, and many of the firms configured their voting rights in a way that curtailed the power of large investors. A positive relationship between firm value and these voting rights configurations is found among the publicly-traded firms in the sample.

(This abstract was borrowed from another version of this item.)

Download Info

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
File URL: http://journals.cambridge.org/abstract_S0022050708000600
File Function: link to article abstract page
Download Restriction: no

Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Cambridge University Press in its journal The Journal of Economic History.

Volume (Year): 68 (2008)
Issue (Month): 03 (September)
Pages: 645-685

as in new window
Handle: RePEc:cup:jechis:v:68:y:2008:i:03:p:645-685_00

Contact details of provider:
Postal: The Edinburgh Building, Shaftesbury Road, Cambridge CB2 2RU UK
Fax: +44 (0)1223 325150
Web page: http://journals.cambridge.org/jid_JEHProvider-Email:journals@cambridge.org

Related research

Keywords:

Other versions of this item:

Find related papers by JEL classification:

References

References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
as in new window
  1. Rafael La Porta & Florencio Lopez-De-Silanes & Andrei Shleifer, 1999. "Corporate Ownership Around the World," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 54(2), pages 471-517, 04.
  2. Howard Bodenhorn, 2006. "Bank Chartering and Political Corruption in Antebellum New York. Free Banking as Reform," NBER Chapters, in: Corruption and Reform: Lessons from America's Economic History, pages 231-258 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Meissner, Christopher M., 2005. "Voting rules and the success of connected lending in 19th century New England banks," Explorations in Economic History, Elsevier, vol. 42(4), pages 509-528, October.
  4. Paul A. Gompers & Joy L. Ishii & Andrew Metrick, 2002. "Corporate Governance and Equity Prices," Center for Financial Institutions Working Papers 02-32, Wharton School Center for Financial Institutions, University of Pennsylvania.
  5. Majewski, John, 1996. "Who Financed the Transportation Revolution? Regional Divergence and Internal Improvements in Antebellum Pennsylvania and Virginia," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 56(04), pages 763-788, December.
  6. Bebchuk, Lucian A. & Cohen, Alma, 2005. "The costs of entrenched boards," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 78(2), pages 409-433, November.
  7. Peter L. Rousseau & Richard Sylla, 1999. "Emerging Financial Markets and Early U.S. Growth," NBER Working Papers 7448, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Eric Hilt, 2004. "Incentives in Corporations: Evidence from the American Whaling Industry," NBER Working Papers 10403, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Sanford J. Grossman & Oliver D. Hart, 1987. "One Share/One Vote and The Market for Corporate Control," Working papers 440, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
  10. Jensen, Michael C. & Meckling, William H., 1976. "Theory of the firm: Managerial behavior, agency costs and ownership structure," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 3(4), pages 305-360, October.
  11. Franks, Julian R & Mayer, Colin & Rossi, Stefano, 2003. "The Origination and Evolution of Ownership and Control," CEPR Discussion Papers 3822, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  12. Helwege, Jean & Pirinsky, Christo & Stulz, Rene M., 2005. "Why Do Firms Become Widely Held? An Analysis of the Dynamics of Corporate Ownership," Working Paper Series 2005-14, Ohio State University, Charles A. Dice Center for Research in Financial Economics.
  13. Laura Casares Field, 2001. "The Expiration of IPO Share Lockups," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 56(2), pages 471-500, 04.
  14. Klein, Daniel & Majewski, John, 1991. "Economy, Community and Law: The Turnpike Movement in New York, 1797-1845," University of California Transportation Center, Working Papers qt61b022cr, University of California Transportation Center.
  15. Harris, Milton & Raviv, Artur, 1988. "Corporate governance : Voting rights and majority rules," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 20(1-2), pages 203-235, January.
  16. Howard Bodenhorn, 2004. "Free Banking and Bank Entry in Nineteenth-Century New York," NBER Working Papers 10654, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  17. Jin, Li & Myers, Stewart C., 2006. "R2 around the world: New theory and new tests," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 79(2), pages 257-292, February.
  18. Morck, Randall & Shleifer, Andrei & Vishny, Robert W., 1988. "Management ownership and market valuation : An empirical analysis," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 20(1-2), pages 293-315, January.
  19. Clifford G. Holderness & Randall S. Kroszner & Dennis P. Sheehan, 1999. "Were the Good Old Days That Good? Changes in Managerial Stock Ownership Since the Great Depression," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 54(2), pages 435-469, 04.
  20. Marco Becht & J. Bradford DeLong, 2005. "Why Has There Been So Little Block Holding in America?," NBER Chapters, in: A History of Corporate Governance around the World: Family Business Groups to Professional Managers, pages 613-666 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  21. Ann M. Carlos & Larry Neal, 2006. "The micro-foundations of the early London capital market: Bank of England shareholders during and after the South Sea Bubble, 1720-25 -super-1," Economic History Review, Economic History Society, vol. 59(3), pages 498-538, 08.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

Citations

Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
as in new window

Cited by:
  1. Foreman-Peck, James & Hannah, Leslie, 2011. "Extreme Divorce: the Managerial Revolution in UK Companies before 1914," Cardiff Economics Working Papers E2011/21, Cardiff University, Cardiff Business School, Economics Section.
  2. Robert E. Wright, 2010. "Rise of the Corporation Nation," NBER Chapters, in: Founding Choices: American Economic Policy in the 1790s, pages 217-258 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Dan Bogart & John Majewski, 2008. "Two Roads to the Transportation Revolution: Early Corporations in the United Kingdom and the United States," NBER Chapters, in: Understanding Long-Run Economic Growth: Geography, Institutions, and the Knowledge Economy, pages 177-204 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Acheson, Graeme & Campbell, Gareth & Turner, John D. & Vanteeva, Nadia, 2014. "Corporate Ownership and Control in Victorian Britain," QUCEH Working Paper Series 14-01, Queen's University Centre for Economic History, Queen's University Belfast.
  5. Eric Hilt, 2014. "Corporate Governance and the Development of Manufacturing Enterprises in Nineteenth-Century Massachusetts," NBER Chapters, in: Enterprising America: Businesses, Banks, and Credit Markets in Historical Perspective National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Charles W. Calomiris & Mark Carlson, 2014. "Corporate Governance and Risk Management at Unprotected Banks: National Banks in the 1890s," NBER Working Papers 19806, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Aldo Musacchio, 2010. "Law and Finance c. 1900," NBER Working Papers 16216, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Eric Hilt, 2009. "Wall Street's First Corporate Governance Crisis: The Panic of 1826," NBER Working Papers 14892, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Howard Bodenhorn & Eugene N. White, 2014. "The Evolution of Bank Boards of Directors in New York, 1840–1950," NBER Chapters, in: Enterprising America: Businesses, Banks, and Credit Markets in Historical Perspective National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Hilt, Eric & Valentine, Jacqueline, 2012. "Democratic Dividends: Stockholding, Wealth, and Politics in New York, 1791–1826," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 72(02), pages 332-363, June.
  11. Jeremy Atack & Michael R. Haines & Robert A. Margo, 2008. "Railroads and the Rise of the Factory: Evidence for the United States, 1850-70," NBER Working Papers 14410, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  12. Turner, John D., 2014. "Financial history and financial economics," QUCEH Working Paper Series 14-03, Queen's University Centre for Economic History, Queen's University Belfast.
  13. Howard Bodenhorn, 2013. "Large Block Shareholders, Institutional Investors, Boards of Directors and Bank Value in the Nineteenth Century," NBER Working Papers 18955, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  14. Howard Bodenhorn, 2012. "Voting Rights, Share Concentration, and Leverage at Nineteenth-Century US Banks," NBER Working Papers 17808, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.

Lists

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

Statistics

Access and download statistics

Corrections

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:cup:jechis:v:68:y:2008:i:03:p:645-685_00. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Keith Waters).

If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.