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Sharing Liability Between Banks and Firms: The Case of Industrial Safety Risk

Author

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  • Marcel Boyer
  • Donatella Porrini

Abstract

We characterize the distortions in environmental liability sharing between firms and banks that the imperfect implementation of government policies implies. These distortions stem from three factors: the presence of moral hazard, the use of objective functions by firms and banks that differs from the social welfare function, and the difficulty for the court to assess the safety care level exerted by the firms. We characterize cases where the liability sharing factor is above or below its full information perfect implementation level. We derive comparative statics results indicating the sensitivity of the liability sharing factor to changes in some parameters relevant for characterizing the optimal policy toward environmental protection or the prevention of industrial accidents. Nous caractérisons les distortions dans le partage de responsabilités entre banques et firmes qu'implique l'implémentation imparfaite des politiques gouvernementales. Ces distortions découlent de la présence de risque moral et de sélection adverse, de l'utilisation de fonctions-objectifs par les firmes et les banques diffèrentes de la fonction de bien-être social, et de la difficulté des cours de justice d'évaluer le niveau de précaution exercé par les firmes. Nous montrons l'existence de divers cas où le partage de responsabilités est supérieur ou inférieur au partage optimal en information et implémentation parfaites. Nous obtenons des résultats de statique comparée illustrant la sensibilité du partage des responsabilités aux paramètres pertinents à la détermination d'une politique optimale de protection environnementale ou de prévention d'accidents industriels.

Suggested Citation

  • Marcel Boyer & Donatella Porrini, 2007. "Sharing Liability Between Banks and Firms: The Case of Industrial Safety Risk," CIRANO Working Papers 2007s-04, CIRANO.
  • Handle: RePEc:cir:cirwor:2007s-04
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    File URL: http://www.cirano.qc.ca/files/publications/2007s-04.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. BOYER, Marcel, 1995. "Environmental Protection Producer Insolvency and Lender Liability," Cahiers de recherche 9557, Universite de Montreal, Departement de sciences economiques.
    2. Marcel Boyer & Donatella Porrini, 2004. "Modelling the choice between regulation and liability in terms of social welfare," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 37(3), pages 590-612, August.
    3. Rohan Pitchford, 2001. "How Liable Should a Lender Be? The Case of Judgment-Proof Firms and Environmental Risk: Reply," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 91(3), pages 739-745, June.
    4. Newman, Harry A. & Wright, David W., 1990. "Strict liability in a principal-agent model," International Review of Law and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 10(3), pages 219-231, December.
    5. Heyes, Anthony G, 1996. "Lender Penalty for Environmental Damage and the Equilibrium Cost of Capital," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 63(250), pages 311-323, May.
    6. Dieter Balkenborg, 2004. "On extended liability in a model of adverse selection," Discussion Papers 0404, Exeter University, Department of Economics.
    7. Hutchinson, Emma & van 't Veld, Klaas, 2005. "Extended liability for environmental accidents: what you see is what you get," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 49(1), pages 157-173, January.
    8. Segerson, Kathleen & Tietenberg, Tom, 1992. "The structure of penalties in environmental enforcement: An economic analysis," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 23(2), pages 179-200, September.
    9. GOBERT, Karine & POITEVIN, Michel, 1998. "Environmental Risks : Should Banks Be Liable?," Cahiers de recherche 1198, Universite de Montreal, Departement de sciences economiques.
    10. Boyd, James & Ingberman, Daniel E, 1997. "The Search for Deep Pockets: Is "Extended Liability" Expensive Liability?," Journal of Law, Economics, and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 13(1), pages 232-258, April.
    11. Eberhard Feess & Ulrich Hege, 2000. "Environmental Harm and Financial Responsibility*," The Geneva Papers on Risk and Insurance - Issues and Practice, Palgrave Macmillan;The Geneva Association, vol. 25(2), pages 220-234, April.
    12. Dieter Balkenborg, 2001. "How Liable Should a Lender Be? The Case of Judgment-Proof Firms and Environmental Risk: Comment," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 91(3), pages 731-738, June.
    13. Mattiacci, Giuseppe Dari & Parisi, Francesco, 2003. "The cost of delegated control: vicarious liability, secondary liability and mandatory insurance," International Review of Law and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 23(4), pages 453-475, December.
    14. Boyer, Marcel & Laffont, Jean-Jacques, 1997. "Environmental risks and bank liability," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 41(8), pages 1427-1459, August.
    15. Marcel Boyer & Donatella Porrini, 2002. "The Choice of Instruments for Environmental Policy: Liability or Regulation?," CIRANO Working Papers 2002s-17, CIRANO.
    16. Feess, Eberhard & Hege, Ulrich, 2003. "Safety monitoring, capital structure, and "financial responsibility"," International Review of Law and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 23(3), pages 323-339, September.
    17. Tracy R. Lewis & David E. M. Sappington, 2001. "How Liable Should a Lender Be? The Case of Judgment-Proof Firms and Environmental Risk: Comment," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 91(3), pages 724-730, June.
    18. Innes, Robert, 2004. "Enforcement costs, optimal sanctions, and the choice between ex-post liability and ex-ante regulation," International Review of Law and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 24(1), pages 29-48, March.
    19. Marcel Boyer & Philippe Mahenc & Michel Moreaux, 2007. "Environmental Protection, Consumer Awareness, Product Characteristics, and Market Power," CIRANO Working Papers 2007s-05, CIRANO.
    20. Shavell, Steven, 1993. "The Optimal Structure of Law Enforcement," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 36(1), pages 255-287, April.
    21. Hiriart, Yolande & Martimort, David, 2004. "Environmental Risk Regulation and Liability under Adverse Selection and Moral Hazard," IDEI Working Papers 256, Institut d'Économie Industrielle (IDEI), Toulouse.
    22. Pitchford, Rohan, 1995. "How Liable Should a Lender Be? The Case of Judgment-Proof Firms and Environmental Risk," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 85(5), pages 1171-1186, December.
    23. Feess, E. & Hege, U., 2000. "Environmental harm and financial responsibility," Other publications TiSEM 7122a4d0-683c-49ed-a55f-0, Tilburg University, School of Economics and Management.
    24. Marcel Boyer & Tracy R. Lewis & Wei Lin Liu, 2000. "Setting standards for credible compliance and law enforcement," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 33(2), pages 319-340, May.
    25. Marcel Boyer & Donatella Porrini, 2000. "Law versus Regulation: A Political Economy Model of Instrument Choice in Environmental Policy," CIRANO Working Papers 2000s-57, CIRANO.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Gérard Mondello, 2017. "Lenders and Risky Activities: Strict Liability or Negligence Rule?," GREDEG Working Papers 2017-13, Groupe de REcherche en Droit, Economie, Gestion (GREDEG CNRS), University of Nice Sophia Antipolis.
    2. BOYER, Marcel & PORRINI, Donatella, 2010. "Optimal Liability Sharing and Court Errors : An Exploratory Analysis," Cahiers de recherche 05-2010, Centre interuniversitaire de recherche en économie quantitative, CIREQ.
    3. Boyer, Marcel & Porrini, Donatella, 2011. "The impact of court errors on liability sharing and safety regulation for environmental/industrial accidents," International Review of Law and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 31(1), pages 21-29, March.
    4. Marcel Boyer & Donatella Porrini, 2008. "The Efficient Liability Sharing Factor For Environmental Disasters: Lessons For Optimal Insurance Regulation," CIRANO Working Papers 2008s-03, CIRANO.
    5. Gérard Mondello, 2012. "Strict Liability, Capped Strict Liability, and Care Effort under Asymmetric Information," Journal of Institutional and Theoretical Economics (JITE), Mohr Siebeck, Tübingen, vol. 168(2), pages 232-251, June.
    6. Gérard Mondello, 2010. "Risky Activities and Strict Liability Rules: Delegating Safety," Working Papers 2010.103, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    liability sharing; industrial/environmental liability; safety care; moral hazard; principal-agent; partage de responsabilités; environnement; prévention; risque moral; sélection adverse; principal-agent;

    JEL classification:

    • D82 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Asymmetric and Private Information; Mechanism Design
    • G32 - Financial Economics - - Corporate Finance and Governance - - - Financing Policy; Financial Risk and Risk Management; Capital and Ownership Structure; Value of Firms; Goodwill
    • K13 - Law and Economics - - Basic Areas of Law - - - Tort Law and Product Liability; Forensic Economics
    • K32 - Law and Economics - - Other Substantive Areas of Law - - - Energy, Environmental, Health, and Safety Law
    • Q28 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Renewable Resources and Conservation - - - Government Policy

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