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Measuring the Extent and Implications of Director Interlocking in the Pre-war Japanese Banking Industry

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  • Tetsuji Okazaki

    (Faculty of Economics, University of Tokyo)

  • Michiru Sawada

    (Graduate School of Economics, Hitotsubashi University)

  • Kazuki Yokoyama

    (Faculty of Economics, Nagoya City University)

Abstract

In prewar Japan, many banks were controlled by industrial companies through capital and personal relationships. Those banks are called "organ banks" (kikan ginko). Organ banks engaged in unsound lending to their related companies, which gave damage to the banks' financial conditions, and consequently made the financial system unstable. This is an accepted view on the financial history in prewar Japan (organ bank hypothesis). However, this view has been based on case studies and casual observations. In this paper we examine the organ bank hypothesis using quantitative data and econometric methodology. To measure the extent of connections between banks and non-banking companies, we compile a comprehensive database of directors and auditors of banks and non-banking companies in 1926. It is found that interlocking of directors and auditors between banks and non-banking companies were very pervasive. More than 80% of ordinary banks had at least one director or auditor who was at the same time a director or auditor of at least one non-banking company. Also, regression analyses confirm that director interlocking had a negative effect on bank performance, especially for small-sized banks.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by CIRJE, Faculty of Economics, University of Tokyo in its series CIRJE F-Series with number CIRJE-F-241.

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Length: 39 pages
Date of creation: Oct 2003
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:tky:fseres:2003cf241

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  1. Yabushita Shiro & Inoue Atsushi, 1993. "The Stability of the Japanese Banking System: A Historical Perspective," Journal of the Japanese and International Economies, Elsevier, vol. 7(4), pages 387-407, December.
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Cited by:
  1. Tetsuji Okazaki & Michiru Sawada & Ke Wang, 2005. "The Fall of "Organ Bank" Relationships During the Wave of Bank Failures and Consolidations: Experience in Pre-war Japan (Published in "Corporate Ownership and Control" 4(4): 20-29,," CARF F-Series CARF-F-052, Center for Advanced Research in Finance, Faculty of Economics, The University of Tokyo.
  2. Tetsuji Okazaki & Michiru Sawada & Kazuki Yokoyama, 2005. "Measuring the Extent and Implications of Director Interlocking in the Pre-war Japanese Banking Industry ?Published in "Journal of Economic History", Dec2005, Vol. 65 Issue 4, p1082-1115, 34p," CARF F-Series CARF-F-039, Center for Advanced Research in Finance, Faculty of Economics, The University of Tokyo.
  3. Jean-Pascal Bassino & Thomas Lagoarde-Segot, 2013. "Trading patterns at the Tokyo Stock Exchange, 1931-1940," CEH Discussion Papers 012, Centre for Economic History, Research School of Economics, Australian National University.
  4. Kiril Danailov Kossev, 2008. "The Banking Sector and the Great Depression in Bulgaria, 1924 - 1938: Interlocking and Financial Sector Profitability," Working Papers 76, Bank of Greece.
  5. Yokoyama, Kazuki, 2007. "Too Big to Fail: the Panic of 1927," MPRA Paper 2768, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  6. Makoto Kasuya, 2007. "Bond markets and banks in inter-war Japan," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 6873, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
  7. Tetsuji Okazaki & Michiru Sawada, 2006. ""Effects of a bank consolidation promotion policy: Evaluating Bank Law in 1927 Japan" ;forthcoming in Financial History Review (Published in "Financial History Review", April 2007,," CARF F-Series CARF-F-058, Center for Advanced Research in Finance, Faculty of Economics, The University of Tokyo.
  8. Tetsuji Okazaki & Michiru Sawada & Ke Wang, 2005. "The Fall of "Organ Bank" Relationships During the Wave of Bank Failures and Consolidations: Experience in Pre-war Japan," CIRJE F-Series CIRJE-F-379, CIRJE, Faculty of Economics, University of Tokyo.

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