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If you Give Shareholders Power, do they Use it? An Empirical Analysis


  • Yair Listokin


Many commentators assert that enhanced shareholder power is a promising cure for corporate governance ills. This paper empirically examines the impact of differential amounts of shareholder power on governance arrangements. When U.S. states enacted statutory antitakeover protections in the 1980s, the states differed in the power granted to shareholders to opt out of the antitakeover protections without agreement by the board of directors. These differences in shareholder power are associated with little change in governance arrangements. The results suggest that simply altering shareholder power without changing other governance mechanisms is unlikely to lead to widespread changes in corporate governance.

Suggested Citation

  • Yair Listokin, 2010. "If you Give Shareholders Power, do they Use it? An Empirical Analysis," Journal of Institutional and Theoretical Economics (JITE), Mohr Siebeck, Tübingen, vol. 166(1), pages 38-53, March.
  • Handle: RePEc:mhr:jinste:urn:sici:0932-4569(201003)166:1_38:iygspd_2.0.tx_2-n

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Lucian Arye Bebchuk & Assaf Hamdani, 2002. "Optimal Defaults for Corporate Law Evolution," NBER Working Papers 8703, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Paul Gompers & Joy Ishii & Andrew Metrick, 2003. "Corporate Governance and Equity Prices," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 118(1), pages 107-156.
    3. Karpoff, Jonathan M. & Malatesta, Paul H., 1989. "The wealth effects of second-generation state takeover legislation," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 25(2), pages 291-322, December.
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    Cited by:

    1. repec:eee:jfinec:v:124:y:2017:i:3:p:464-485 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. Kenworthey Bilz, 2010. "Defending the (Mis)use of Statistics in Law," Journal of Institutional and Theoretical Economics (JITE), Mohr Siebeck, Tübingen, vol. 166(1), pages 194-198, March.
    3. Simon Deakin, 2010. "Understanding Corporate Governance Default Rules," Journal of Institutional and Theoretical Economics (JITE), Mohr Siebeck, Tübingen, vol. 166(1), pages 54-57, March.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • G34 - Financial Economics - - Corporate Finance and Governance - - - Mergers; Acquisitions; Restructuring; Corporate Governance
    • K22 - Law and Economics - - Regulation and Business Law - - - Business and Securities Law
    • D72 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Political Processes: Rent-seeking, Lobbying, Elections, Legislatures, and Voting Behavior


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