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Machiavellian Underpricing

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  • Biais, Bruno
  • Perotti, Enrico C

Abstract

We analyse politically motivated privatization design in a bipartisan environment where politicians lack commitment power. Suppose the median class voters a priori favour redistributive policies. If the privatization programme succeeds in allocating enough shares to these citizens, they become averse to redistributive policies, which would be detrimental to the values of their shareholdings. To induce the median class voters to buy enough shares to shift their political preferences, underpricing is often necessary. The more unequal the society, the poorer the median class, the less willing they are to buy shares, the larger the necessary underpricing. When inequalities are large this leads to voucher privatization. Shifting the preferences of the middle class by privatizing is impossible when strong ex-ante political constraints require large upfront transfers to insiders, reducing the value which may be distributed through the privatization programme, or when social inequality is extreme.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 2014.

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Date of creation: Nov 1998
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Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:2014

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Related research

Keywords: Elections; Political Economy; Political Risk; Privatization; Underpricing;

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Cited by:
  1. Wolfgang Aussenegg, 1999. "Going Public in Poland: Case-by-Case Privatizations, Mass Privatization and Private Sector Initial Public Offerings," William Davidson Institute Working Papers Series 292, William Davidson Institute at the University of Michigan.
  2. Maw, James, 2002. "Partial privatization in transition economies," Economic Systems, Elsevier, vol. 26(3), pages 271-282, September.
  3. Bertocchi, Graziella & Spagat, Michael, 2001. "The Politics of Co-optation," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 29(4), pages 591-607, December.
  4. Kira Boerner, 2004. "The Political Economy of Privatization: Why Do Governments Want Reforms?," Working Papers 2004.106, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei.
  5. Perotti, Enrico C & van Oijen, Pieter, 1999. "Privatization, Political Risk and Stock Market Development," CEPR Discussion Papers 2243, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  6. Gerard Rpland, 2001. "The Political Economy of Transition," William Davidson Institute Working Papers Series 413, William Davidson Institute at the University of Michigan.
  7. Börner, Kira, 2004. "The Political Economy of Privatization," Discussion Papers in Economics 296, University of Munich, Department of Economics.

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