IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/
MyIDEAS: Login to save this paper or follow this series

The Economics of Conflicts of Interest in Financial Institutions

  • Hamid Mehran
  • Rene M. Stulz

A conflict of interest exists when a party to a transaction could potentially make a gain from taking actions that are detrimental to the other party in the transaction. This paper examines the economics of conflicts of interest in financial institutions and reviews the growing empirical literature (mostly focused on analysts) on the economic implications of these conflicts. Economic analysis shows that, although conflicts of interest are omnipresent when contracting is costly and parties are imperfectly informed, there are important factors that mitigate their impact and, strikingly, it is possible for customers of financial institutions to benefit from the existence of such conflicts. The empirical literature reaches conclusions that differ across types of conflicts of interest, but overall these conclusions are more ambivalent and certainly more benign than the conclusions drawn by journalists and politicians from mostly anecdotal evidence. Though much has been made of conflicts of interest arising from investment banking activities, there is no consensus in the empirical literature supporting the view that conflicts resulting from these activities had a systematic adverse impact on customers of financial institutions.

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

File URL: http://www.nber.org/papers/w12695.pdf
Download Restriction: no

Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 12695.

as
in new window

Length:
Date of creation: Nov 2006
Date of revision:
Publication status: published as Mehran, Hamid & Stulz, Rene M., 2007. "The economics of conflicts of interest in financial institutions," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 85(2), pages 267-296, August.
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:12695
Note: CF
Contact details of provider: Postal: National Bureau of Economic Research, 1050 Massachusetts Avenue Cambridge, MA 02138, U.S.A.
Phone: 617-868-3900
Web page: http://www.nber.org
Email:


More information through EDIRC

References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:

as in new window
  1. Ayako Yasuda, 2005. "Do Bank Relationships Affect the Firm's Underwriter Choice in the Corporate-Bond Underwriting Market?," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 60(3), pages 1259-1292, 06.
  2. Daniel J. Bradley & Bradford D. Jordan & Jay R. Ritter, 2008. "Analyst Behavior Following IPOs: The 'Bubble Period' Evidence," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 21(1), pages 101-133, January.
  3. Puri, Manju, 1994. "The long-term default performance of bank underwritten security issues," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 18(2), pages 397-418, January.
  4. Jorion, Philippe & Liu, Zhu & Shi, Charles, 2005. "Informational effects of regulation FD: evidence from rating agencies," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 76(2), pages 309-330, May.
  5. anonymous, 2000. "In this issue ..," Manufacturing & Service Operations Management, INFORMS, vol. 2(3), pages i-ii.
  6. Narayanan, Rajesh P. & Rangan, Kasturi P. & Rangan, N.K.Nanda K., 2004. "The role of syndicate structure in bank underwriting," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 72(3), pages 555-580, June.
  7. Patrick Bolton & Xavier Freixas & Joel Shapiro, 2004. "Conflicts of Interest, Information Provision and Competition in Banking," Working Papers 130, Barcelona Graduate School of Economics.
  8. Anup Agrawal & Sahiba Chadha & Mark A. Chen, 2006. "Who Is Afraid of Reg FD? The Behavior and Performance of Sell-Side Analysts Following the SEC's Fair Disclosure Rules," The Journal of Business, University of Chicago Press, vol. 79(6), pages 2811-2834, November.
  9. Laeven, Luc & Levine, Ross, 2007. "Is there a diversification discount in financial conglomerates?," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 85(2), pages 331-367, August.
  10. Grossman, Sanford J, 1981. "The Informational Role of Warranties and Private Disclosure about Product Quality," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 24(3), pages 461-83, December.
  11. Armando Gomes & Gary Gorton & Leonardo Madureira, 2004. "SEC Regulation Fair Disclosure, Information, and the Cost of Capital," NBER Working Papers 10567, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  12. Lloyd-Davies, Peter & Canes, Michael, 1978. "Stock Prices and the Publication of Second-Hand Information," The Journal of Business, University of Chicago Press, vol. 51(1), pages 43-56, January.
  13. Krigman, Laurie & Shaw, Wayne H. & Womack, Kent L., 2001. "Why do firms switch underwriters?," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 60(2-3), pages 245-284, May.
  14. Paul G. Mahoney, 2004. "Manager-Investor Conflicts in Mutual Funds," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 18(2), pages 161-182, Spring.
  15. Frye, Melissa B, 2001. "The Performance of Bank-Managed Mutual Funds," Journal of Financial Research, Southern Finance Association;Southwestern Finance Association, vol. 24(3), pages 419-42, Fall.
  16. Chemmanur, Thomas J & Fulghieri, Paolo, 1994. " Investment Bank Reputation, Information Production, and Financial Intermediation," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 49(1), pages 57-79, March.
  17. Berger, Philip G. & Ofek, Eli, 1995. "Diversification's effect on firm value," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 37(1), pages 39-65, January.
  18. Alexander Ljungqvist & William J. Wilhelm, 2003. "IPO Pricing in the Dot-com Bubble," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 58(2), pages 723-752, 04.
  19. Ulrike Malmendier & Devin Shanthikumar, 2004. "Are Investors Naive About Incentives?," NBER Working Papers 10812, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  20. Cowen, Amanda & Groysberg, Boris & Healy, Paul, 2006. "Which types of analyst firms are more optimistic?," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 41(1-2), pages 119-146, April.
  21. Jay R. Ritter & Ivo Welch, 2002. "A Review of IPO Activity, Pricing, and Allocations," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 57(4), pages 1795-1828, 08.
  22. Ljungqvist, Alexander & Marston, Felicia & Starks, Laura T. & Wei, Kelsey D. & Yan, Hong, 2007. "Conflicts of interest in sell-side research and the moderating role of institutional investors," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 85(2), pages 420-456, August.
  23. Tim Loughran & Jay R. Ritter, 2002. "Why Don't Issuers Get Upset About Leaving Money on the Table in IPOs?," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 15(2), pages 413-444, March.
  24. anonymous, 2000. "In this issue ..," Manufacturing & Service Operations Management, INFORMS, vol. 2(4), pages v-vii.
  25. Eleswarapu, Venkat R. & Thompson, Rex & Venkataraman, Kumar, 2004. "The Impact of Regulation Fair Disclosure: Trading Costs and Information Asymmetry," Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis, Cambridge University Press, vol. 39(02), pages 209-225, June.
  26. Ohad Kadan & Leonardo Madureira & Rong Wang & Tzachi Zach, 2009. "Conflicts of Interest and Stock Recommendations: The Effects of the Global Settlement and Related Regulations," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 22(10), pages 4189-4217, October.
  27. Alexander Ljungqvist & Christopher Malloy & Felicia Marston, 2009. "Rewriting History," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 64(4), pages 1935-1960, 08.
  28. Lang, Larry H P & Stulz, Rene M, 1994. "Tobin's q, Corporate Diversification, and Firm Performance," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 102(6), pages 1248-80, December.
  29. Ritter, Jay R. & Zhang, Donghang, 2007. "Affiliated mutual funds and the allocation of initial public offerings," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 86(2), pages 337-368, November.
  30. Puri, Manju, 1999. "Commercial banks as underwriters: implications for the going public process," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 54(2), pages 133-163, October.
  31. Roten, Ivan C. & Mullineaux, Donald J., 2002. "Debt underwriting by commercial bank-affiliated firms and investment banks: More evidence," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 26(4), pages 689-718, April.
  32. repec:ags:afjare:141665 is not listed on IDEAS
  33. Asquith, Paul & Mikhail, Michael B. & Au, Andrea S., 2005. "Information content of equity analyst reports," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 75(2), pages 245-282, February.
  34. Patrick Bajari & John Krainer, 2004. "An Empirical Model of Stock Analysts' Recommendations: Market Fundamentals, Conflicts of Interest, and Peer Effects," NBER Working Papers 10665, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  35. Lin, Hsiou-wei & McNichols, Maureen F., 1998. "Underwriting relationships, analysts' earnings forecasts and investment recommendations," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 25(1), pages 101-127, February.
  36. Ljungqvist, Alexander P. & Marston, Felicia & Wilhelm Jr, William J, 2003. "Competing for Securities Underwriting Mandates: Banking Relationships and Analyst Recommendations," CEPR Discussion Papers 4162, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  37. James, Christopher & Karceski, Jason, 2006. "Strength of analyst coverage following IPOs," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 82(1), pages 1-34, October.
  38. Patricia C. O'Brien & Maureen F. Mcnichols & Lin Hsiou-Wei, 2005. "Analyst Impartiality and Investment Banking Relationships," Journal of Accounting Research, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 43(4), pages 623-650, 09.
  39. Andrew R. Jackson, 2005. "Trade Generation, Reputation, and Sell-Side Analysts," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 60(2), pages 673-717, 04.
  40. Akerlof, George A, 1970. "The Market for 'Lemons': Quality Uncertainty and the Market Mechanism," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 84(3), pages 488-500, August.
  41. Warren Bailey & Haitao Li & Connie X. Mao & Rui Zhong, 2003. "Regulation Fair Disclosure and Earnings Information: Market, Analyst, and Corporate Responses," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 58(6), pages 2487-2514, December.
  42. Edwin J. Elton & Martin J. Gruber & Christopher R. Blake, 2003. "Incentive Fees and Mutual Funds," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 58(2), pages 779-804, 04.
  43. Stein, Jeremy C, 1989. "Efficient Capital Markets, Inefficient Firms: A Model of Myopic Corporate Behavior," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 104(4), pages 655-69, November.
  44. Gintschel, Andreas & Markov, Stanimir, 2004. "The effectiveness of Regulation FD," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 37(3), pages 293-314, September.
  45. Barber, Brad M. & Lehavy, Reuven & McNichols, Maureen & Trueman, Brett, 2006. "Buys, holds, and sells: The distribution of investment banks' stock ratings and the implications for the profitability of analysts' recommendations," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 41(1-2), pages 87-117, April.
  46. Bradshaw, Mark T. & Richardson, Scott A. & Sloan, Richard G., 2006. "The relation between corporate financing activities, analysts' forecasts and stock returns," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 42(1-2), pages 53-85, October.
  47. Steven Drucker & Manju Puri, 2005. "On the Benefits of Concurrent Lending and Underwriting," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 60(6), pages 2763-2799, December.
  48. Michaely, Roni & Womack, Kent L, 1999. "Conflict of Interest and the Credibility of Underwriter Analyst Recommendations," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 12(4), pages 653-86.
  49. Stickel, Scott E, 1992. " Reputation and Performance among Security Analysts," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 47(5), pages 1811-36, December.
  50. Kroszner, Randall S & Rajan, Raghuram G, 1994. "Is the Glass-Steagall Act Justified? A Study of the U.S. Experience with Universal Banking before 1933," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 84(4), pages 810-32, September.
  51. DeLong, Gayle L., 2001. "Stockholder gains from focusing versus diversifying bank mergers," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 59(2), pages 221-252, February.
  52. Alexander Ljungqvist & Felicia Marston & William J. Wilhelm, 2009. "Scaling the Hierarchy: How and Why Investment Banks Compete for Syndicate Co-management Appointments," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 22(10), pages 3977-4007, October.
  53. Leslie Boni & Kent L. Womack, 2002. "Wall Street’s Credibility Problem: Misaligned Incentives and Dubious Fixes?," Center for Financial Institutions Working Papers 02-04, Wharton School Center for Financial Institutions, University of Pennsylvania.
  54. Fried, Dov & Givoly, Dan, 1982. "Financial analysts' forecasts of earnings : A better surrogate for market expectations," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 4(2), pages 85-107, October.
  55. Harrison Hong & Jeffrey D. Kubik, 2003. "Analyzing the Analysts: Career Concerns and Biased Earnings Forecasts," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 58(1), pages 313-351, 02.
  56. Griffin, John M. & Harris, Jeffrey H. & Topaloglu, Selim, 2007. "Why are IPO investors net buyers through lead underwriters?," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 85(2), pages 518-551, August.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:12695. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: ()

If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.