The Ownership of Ratings
AbstractStandard & Poor's provides corporate governance ratings to firms who can, upon learning those, decide to reveal them or not to the market. This paper identifies the circumstances under which such a simple ownership contract over ratings can emerge as the optimal arrangement. Firms hiding their ratings can only be an equilibrium outcome if they are sufficiently uncertain of their quality at the time of hiring a certification intermediary and if the decision to get a rating is not observable. For some distribution functions of firms' qualities, a competitive market is a necessary condition for this result to obtain. Competition between rating intermediaries will unambiguously lead to less information being revealed in equilibrium.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 5432.
Date of creation: Dec 2005
Date of revision:
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Other versions of this item:
- D23 - Microeconomics - - Production and Organizations - - - Organizational Behavior; Transaction Costs; Property Rights
- D82 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Asymmetric and Private Information; Mechanism Design
- G34 - Financial Economics - - Corporate Finance and Governance - - - Mergers; Acquisitions; Restructuring; Corporate Governance
- L15 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Information and Product Quality
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2006-01-29 (All new papers)
- NEP-FIN-2006-01-29 (Finance)
- NEP-FMK-2006-01-29 (Financial Markets)
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