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Going public in interwar Britain

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  • Chambers, David

Abstract

Utilising a new sample of interwar initial public offerings (IPOs), I consider the effectiveness of the interwar stock market for firms going public. Consistent with the pecking order theory, IPO proceeds contributed only modestly to domestic industry's capital expenditure needs. IPOs of capital-hungry new manufacturing industries raised no more finance than did the rest of manufacturing. This was in part attributable to the detrimental effect of weak financial regulation on investor appetite for newer, riskier enterprises. In terms of the quality of firms allowed onto the market, IPO survival rates of the early and late 1920s were shockingly low, just as earlier research has shown. However, survival rates rebounded strongly in the following decade due not only to the economic recovery but also to tougher scrutiny of listing applications by the London Stock Exchange.

Suggested Citation

  • Chambers, David, 2010. "Going public in interwar Britain," Financial History Review, Cambridge University Press, vol. 17(01), pages 51-71, April.
  • Handle: RePEc:cup:fihrev:v:17:y:2010:i:01:p:51-71_99
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    Cited by:

    1. Carsten Burhop & David Chambers & Brian Cheffins, 2011. "Is Regulation Essential to Stock Market Development? Going Public in London and Berlin, 1900-1913," Cologne Economic History papers 10, University of Cologne, Department of Economic and Business History, revised Mar 2011.
    2. Crafts, Nicholas & Mills, Terence C., 2013. "Rearmament to the Rescue? New Estimates of the Impact of “Keynesian” Policies in 1930s' Britain," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 73(04), pages 1077-1104, December.
    3. Acheson, Graeme G. & Coyle, Christopher & Turner, John D., 2015. "Happy hour followed by hangover: Financing the UK brewery industry, 1880-1913," QUCEH Working Paper Series 15-01, Queen's University Belfast, Queen's University Centre for Economic History.
    4. Sebastian A.J. Keibek, 2016. "Using probate data to determine historical male occupational structures," Working Papers 26, Department of Economic and Social History at the University of Cambridge, revised 21 Mar 2017.
    5. Carsten Burhop & Thorsten Luebbers, 2011. "The design of licensing contracts: Chemicals, Pharmaceuticals, and Electrical Engineering in Imperial Germany," Cologne Economic History papers 11, University of Cologne, Department of Economic and Business History, revised Jun 2011.
    6. Burhop, Carsten & Chambers, David & Cheffins, Brian, 2014. "Regulating IPOs: Evidence from going public in London, 1900–1913," Explorations in Economic History, Elsevier, vol. 51(C), pages 60-76.

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