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How Do Financial Systems Affect Economic Performance?


  • Wendy Carlin
  • Colin Mayer



This paper examines the relation between financial, corporate and legal systems, and economic performance in different countries. It reviews international comparisons that undertake detailed analyses of individual, developed countries and studies that use large, cross-country data banks, including developing countries. While the former do not provide evidence of a clear relation between different types of systems and economic performance, the latter report a strong association of financial development with economic growth. A recent theoretical literature offers a way of reconciling these two sets of studies. It points to a relation between financial/ corporate systems and types of activity with some systems favouring high risk, short-term investments and others promoting long-term, relatively low risk investments. These theories also suggest that systems may be related to stages of economic development. The paper summarizes a first empirical study that reports an association between financial/ corporate systems, types of activity and stages of economic development. The paper concludes that these relationships have important implications for the design of regulation and legal systems in different countries.

Suggested Citation

  • Wendy Carlin & Colin Mayer, 1999. "How Do Financial Systems Affect Economic Performance?," OFRC Working Papers Series 1999fe08, Oxford Financial Research Centre.
  • Handle: RePEc:sbs:wpsefe:1999fe08

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Pamela Góngora Salazar, 2010. "Determinantes de la volatilidad en el producto: evidencia empírica," VNIVERSITAS ECONÓMICA 008297, UNIVERSIDAD JAVERIANA - BOGOTÁ.
    2. Marina-Eliza Spaliara & Holger Görg, 2009. "Financial health, exports, and firm survival: A comparison of British and French firms," Discussion Paper Series 2009_18, Department of Economics, Loughborough University.
    3. Holger Görg & Marina-Eliza Spaliara, 2014. "Financial Health, Exports and Firm Survival: Evidence from UK and French Firms," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 81(323), pages 419-444, July.
    4. Franz H. Hahn, 2002. "Bedeutung von Aktienmärkten für Wachstum und Wachstumsschwankungen in den OECD-Ländern," Working Paper Reihe der AK Wien - Materialien zu Wirtschaft und Gesellschaft 79, Kammer für Arbeiter und Angestellte für Wien, Abteilung Wirtschaftswissenschaft und Statistik.
    5. Doris Neuberger, 2005. "What’s Common to Relationship Banking and Relationship Investing? Reflections within the Contractual Theory of the Firm," Finance 0503001, EconWPA.
    6. Rivaud-Danset, Dorothée & Oheix, Valérie, 2005. "Do corporate financial patterns in European countries converge and testitfy for disintermediation?," MPRA Paper 40, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    7. Christian Schröder, 2009. "Financial System and Innovations-Determinants of Early Stage Venture Capital in Europe," Schumpeter Discussion Papers sdp09004, Universitätsbibliothek Wuppertal, University Library.
    8. Roland Füss & Denis Schweizer, 2012. "Short and long-term interactions between venture capital returns and the macroeconomy: evidence for the United States," Review of Quantitative Finance and Accounting, Springer, vol. 38(3), pages 391-410, April.
    9. Jean-Paul Pollin & Anne-Gaël Vaubourg, 2006. "Environnement juridique et systèmes de gouvernance. Quelles conséquences pour l'intégration financière européenne ?," Revue économique, Presses de Sciences-Po, vol. 57(4), pages 919-940.
    10. Tylecote, Andrew & Ramirez, Paulina, 2006. "Corporate governance and innovation: The UK compared with the US and 'insider' economies," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 35(1), pages 160-180, February.
    11. Hyytinen, Ari & Pajarinen, Mika, 2001. "Financial Systems and Venture Capital in Nordic Countries: A comparative Study," Discussion Papers 774, The Research Institute of the Finnish Economy.
    12. António Afonso & Raquel Ferreira & Edmund Freitas & Celso Nóbrega & José Pinheiro, 2003. "Intermediaries, Financial Markets and Growth: Some more International Evidence," Working Papers Department of Economics 2003/02, ISEG - Lisbon School of Economics and Management, Department of Economics, Universidade de Lisboa.
    13. Franz R. Hahn, 2002. "The Finance-Growth Nexus Revisited. New Evidence from OECD Countries," WIFO Working Papers 176, WIFO.
    14. Dhillon, Amrita & Rossetto, Silvia, 2009. "Corporate Control and Multiple Large Shareholders," The Warwick Economics Research Paper Series (TWERPS) 891, University of Warwick, Department of Economics.

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