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Profit or politics? Understanding renationalizations in Russia

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  • Chernykh, Lucy

Abstract

This study examines firm-level determinants of the government incentives to acquire controlling stakes in private companies. Using a novel hand-collected dataset of 153 largest listed and unlisted Russian companies, I investigate the methods and the rationales of a 2004–2008 wave of selected nationalizations in a post-privatization market. I find robust evidence that formerly privatized and domestically-owned companies in strategically important sectors face the highest risks of corporate control transfers from private to state hands. I also find that the corporate tax evasion is another significant determinant of a firm nationalization. Contrary to commonly held beliefs, there is little evidence that renationalizations in Russia are driven by firm profitability factors: the government neither systematically “cherry-picks” best performers nor addresses market failures by rescuing national champions in financial distress. These results contribute to t'he politics and finance literature by providing new firm-level evidence on the importance of strategic nationalism in the government's decision to intervene into the corporate control structures.

Suggested Citation

  • Chernykh, Lucy, 2011. "Profit or politics? Understanding renationalizations in Russia," Journal of Corporate Finance, Elsevier, vol. 17(5), pages 1237-1253.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:corfin:v:17:y:2011:i:5:p:1237-1253
    DOI: 10.1016/j.jcorpfin.2011.06.009
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    Cited by:

    1. Nadia Vanteeva & Charles Hickson, 2016. "The Effect of State-Private Co-partnership System on Russian Industry," Review of Industrial Organization, Springer;The Industrial Organization Society, vol. 48(3), pages 333-356, May.
    2. Ruben Enikolopov & Maria Petrova & Konstantin Sonin, 2018. "Social Media and Corruption," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, vol. 10(1), pages 150-174, January.
    3. repec:eee:rujoec:v:2:y:2016:i:1:p:41-55 is not listed on IDEAS
    4. Stefano CLO & Chiara F. DEL BO & Matteo FERRARIS & Massimo FLORIO & Daniela VANDONE & Carlo FIORIO, 2015. "Public Enterprises In The Market For Corporate Control: Recent Worldwide Evidence," Annals of Public and Cooperative Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 86(4), pages 559-583, December.
    5. Ichiro Iwasaki & Satoshi Mizobata & Alexander A. Muravyev, 2017. "Ownership Dynamics and Firm Performance in an Emerging Economy: A Meta-Analysis of the Russian Literature," KIER Working Papers 955 Classification-JD22, , Kyoto University, Institute of Economic Research.
    6. Stefano Clò & Matteo Ferraris & Massimo Florio, 2015. "Public Enterprises in a Global Perspective in the Last Decade," L'industria, Società editrice il Mulino, issue 1, pages 111-138.
    7. Tsatsos, Aristidis, 2012. "Die Liberalisierung des russischen Gassektors: 3 Szenarios?
      [The liberalisation of the Russian gas sector: 3 scenarios?]
      ," MPRA Paper 44623, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    8. Stefano CLÒ & Chiara F. DEL BÒ & Matteo FERRARIS & Carlo FIORIO & Massimo FLORIO & Daniela VANDONE, 2014. "Publicization versus Privatization: Recent worldwide evidence," CIRIEC Working Papers 1403, CIRIEC - Université de Liège.
    9. Borisova, Ginka & Cowan, Arnold R., 2014. "Government asset sales, economic nationalism, and acquirer wealth effects," Journal of Corporate Finance, Elsevier, vol. 29(C), pages 351-368.
    10. Clò, Stefano & Fiorio, Carlo V. & Florio, Massimo, 2017. "The targets of state capitalism: evidence from M&A deals," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 47(C), pages 61-74.
    11. Victor DRAGOTA & Carmen LIPARA & Radu CIOBANU, 2013. "Agency Problems and Synergistic Effects in Romania: The Determinants of the Control Premium," Czech Journal of Economics and Finance (Finance a uver), Charles University Prague, Faculty of Social Sciences, vol. 63(2), pages 197-219, May.
    12. Carsten Sprenger & Olga Lazareva, 2017. "Corporate Governance and Investment: Evidence from Russian Unlisted Firms," HSE Working papers WP BRP 160/EC/2017, National Research University Higher School of Economics.
    13. Del Bo, Chiara D. & Ferraris, Matteo & Florio, Massimo, 2017. "Governments in the market for corporate control: Evidence from M&A deals involving state-owned enterprises," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 45(1), pages 89-109.
    14. Alexeev, Michael & Weber, Shlomo (ed.), 2013. "The Oxford Handbook of the Russian Economy," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780199759927.
    15. Li, Zhaohua & Yamada, Takeshi, 2015. "Political and economic incentives of government in partial privatization," Journal of Corporate Finance, Elsevier, vol. 32(C), pages 169-189.
    16. repec:rnp:ecopol:ep1709 is not listed on IDEAS

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Nationalization; Political economy; National champions; Strategic sectors; Russia;

    JEL classification:

    • G34 - Financial Economics - - Corporate Finance and Governance - - - Mergers; Acquisitions; Restructuring; Corporate Governance
    • P26 - Economic Systems - - Socialist Systems and Transition Economies - - - Political Economy

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