Institutions, Competition, and Capital Market Integration in Japan
Using a newly-constructed panel data set which includes annual estimates of lending rates for 47 Japanese prefectures, we analyze why interest rates converged over the period 1884-1925. We find evidence that technological innovations and institutional changes played an important role in creating a national capital market in Japan. In particular, the diffusion in the use of the telegraph, the growth in commercial branch banking networks, and the development of Bank of Japan fs branches reduced interest-rate differentials. Bank regulation appears to have played little role in impeding financial market integration.
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