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Law and Finance

  • Rafael LaPorta
  • Florencio Lopez-de-Silanes
  • Andrei Shleifer
  • Robert W. Vishny

This paper examines legal rules covering protection of corporate shareholders and creditors, the origin of these rules, and the quality of their enforcement in 49 countries. The results show that common†law countries generally have the strongest, and french civil law countries the weakest, legal protections of investors, with German†-and Scandinavian†-civil†law countries located in the middle. We also find that concentration of ownership of shares in the largest public companies is negatively related to investor protections, consistent with the hypothesis that small, diversified share†holders are unlikely to be important in countries that fail to protect their rights.

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File URL: http://scholar.harvard.edu/shleifer/node/19451
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Paper provided by Harvard University OpenScholar in its series Working Paper with number 19451.

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Handle: RePEc:qsh:wpaper:19451
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  1. Sanford J. Grossman & Oliver D. Hart, 1987. "One Share/One Vote and The Market for Corporate Control," Working papers 440, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
  2. Stephen Knack & Philip Keefer, 1995. "Institutions And Economic Performance: Cross-Country Tests Using Alternative Institutional Measures," Economics and Politics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 7(3), pages 207-227, November.
  3. Shleifer, Andrei & Vishny, Robert W., 1986. "Large Shareholders and Corporate Control," Scholarly Articles 3606237, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  4. Morck, Randall & Shleifer, Andrei & Vishny, Robert W., 1988. "Management ownership and market valuation : An empirical analysis," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 20(1-2), pages 293-315, January.
  5. Harris, Milton & Raviv, Artur, 1988. "Corporate governance : Voting rights and majority rules," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 20(1-2), pages 203-235, January.
  6. Marco Pagano & Fabio Panetta & Luigi Zingales, . "Why Do Companies Go Public? An Empirical Analysis," CRSP working papers 330, Center for Research in Security Prices, Graduate School of Business, University of Chicago.
  7. Rajan, Raghuram G & Zingales, Luigi, 1995. " What Do We Know about Capital Structure? Some Evidence from International Data," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 50(5), pages 1421-60, December.
  8. Demsetz, Harold & Lehn, Kenneth, 1985. "The Structure of Corporate Ownership: Causes and Consequences," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 93(6), pages 1155-77, December.
  9. Ross Levine, 1998. "The legal environment, banks, and long-run economic growth," Proceedings, Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland, issue Aug, pages 596-620.
  10. Deininger, K & Squire, L, 1996. "Measuring Income Inequality : A New Data-Base," Papers 537, Harvard - Institute for International Development.
  11. King, Robert G. & Levine, Ross, 1993. "Finance and growth : Schumpeter might be right," Policy Research Working Paper Series 1083, The World Bank.
  12. Knack, Stephen & Keefer, Philip, 1995. "Institutions and Economic Performance: Cross-Country Tests Using Alternative Institutional Indicators," MPRA Paper 23118, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  13. Boycko, Maxim & Shleifer, Andrei & Vishny, Robert W., 1997. "Privatizing Russia," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262522284, March.
  14. Levy, Haim, 1983. " Economic Evaluation of Voting Power of Common Stock," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 38(1), pages 79-93, March.
  15. Gary Gorton & Frank A. Schmid, 1996. "Universal Banking and the Performance of German Firms," NBER Working Papers 5453, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  16. Hart, Oliver, 1995. "Firms, Contracts, and Financial Structure," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780198288817, December.
  17. Levine, Ross & Zervos, Sara, 1996. "Stock markets, banks, and economic growth," Policy Research Working Paper Series 1690, The World Bank.
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