IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/sbs/wpsefe/2005fe07.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Race to the top or bottom? Corporate governance, freedom of reincorporation and competition in law

Author

Listed:
  • Zsuzsanna Fluck
  • Colin Mayer

Abstract

This paper investigates the governance structure choices of firms when there is competition between legal systems. We study the impact of the allocation of control over choice of governance and reincorporation on firms’ technologies and technological specialization of countries in the context of a model of the firm in which there are agency conflicts between shareholders and managers. We show that the allocation of control over firms’ reincorporation decisions determines the corporate governance choice ex ante and the outcome of the competition between legal regimes ex post. When managers have control over reincorporation then competitive deregulation and “runs to the bottom†ensue. When shareholders have partial or full control then there is diversity in governance structures. Runs to the bottom are not necessarily socially undesirable but they have a feedback effect on firms’ choices of technologies that may make the party in control worse off ex ante. We show that it is impossible for any country to achieve social welfare maximization of its existing and new enterprises. With competition between legal regimes, start-up and mature companies incorporate in different jurisdictions even when reincorporation is correctly anticipated.

Suggested Citation

  • Zsuzsanna Fluck & Colin Mayer, 2005. "Race to the top or bottom? Corporate governance, freedom of reincorporation and competition in law," OFRC Working Papers Series 2005fe07, Oxford Financial Research Centre.
  • Handle: RePEc:sbs:wpsefe:2005fe07
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.finance.ox.ac.uk/file_links/finecon_papers/2005fe07.pdf
    Download Restriction: no

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Lucian Arye Bebchuk & Allen Ferrell, 2001. "A New Approach to Takeover Law and Regulatory Competition," NBER Working Papers 8148, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Fluck, Zsuzsanna, 1999. "The Dynamics of the Management-Shareholder Conflict," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 12(2), pages 379-404.
    3. Oren Bar-Gill & Michal Barzuza & Lucian Bebchuk, 2006. "The Market for Corporate Law," Journal of Institutional and Theoretical Economics (JITE), Mohr Siebeck, Tübingen, vol. 162(1), pages 134-160, March.
    4. Reese, William Jr. & Weisbach, Michael S., 2002. "Protection of minority shareholder interests, cross-listings in the United States, and subsequent equity offerings," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 66(1), pages 65-104, October.
    5. Marco Pagano & Paolo F. Volpin, 2005. "The Political Economy of Corporate Governance," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 95(4), pages 1005-1030, September.
    6. Daines, Robert, 2001. "Does Delaware law improve firm value?," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 62(3), pages 525-558, December.
    7. Enrico Perotti & Ernst-Ludwig von Thadden, 2002. "The Political Economy of Bank- and Market Dominance," Cahiers de Recherches Economiques du Département d'Econométrie et d'Economie politique (DEEP) 02.14, Université de Lausanne, Faculté des HEC, DEEP, revised Apr 2003.
    8. Mike Burkart & Denis Gromb & Fausto Panunzi, 1997. "Large Shareholders, Monitoring, and the Value of the Firm," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 112(3), pages 693-728.
    9. Marco Pagano & Ailsa A. Röell & Josef Zechner, 2002. "The Geography of Equity Listing: Why Do Companies List Abroad?," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 57(6), pages 2651-2694, December.
    10. Romano, Roberta, 1985. "Law as a Product: Some Pieces of the Incorporation Puzzle," Journal of Law, Economics, and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 1(2), pages 225-283, Fall.
    11. Black, Bernard S. & Gilson, Ronald J., 1998. "Venture capital and the structure of capital markets: banks versus stock markets," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 47(3), pages 243-277, March.
    12. Kahan, Marcel & Kamar, Ehud, 2002. "The Myth of State Competition in Corporate Law," Berkeley Olin Program in Law & Economics, Working Paper Series qt3xq7p9xw, Berkeley Olin Program in Law & Economics.
    13. Baysinger, Barry D & Butler, Henry N, 1985. "The Role of Corporate Law in the Theory of the Firm," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 28(1), pages 179-191, April.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. Goergen, Marc & Renneboog, Luc, 2008. "Contractual corporate governance," Journal of Corporate Finance, Elsevier, vol. 14(3), pages 166-182, June.
    2. Rui Albuquerque & Jianjun Miao, 2013. "CEO Power, Compensation, and Governance," Annals of Economics and Finance, Society for AEF, pages 443-479.
    3. Bruno Deffains & Dominique Demougin, 2006. "Institutional Competition, Political Process and Holdup," SFB 649 Discussion Papers SFB649DP2006-027, Sonderforschungsbereich 649, Humboldt University, Berlin, Germany.
    4. Deffains, Bruno & Demougin, Dominique, 2008. "Legal competition, political process and irreversible investment decisions," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 24(3), pages 615-627, September.
    5. Becht, Marco & Mayer, Colin & Wagner, Hannes, 2006. "Where Do Firms Incorporate?," CEPR Discussion Papers 5875, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    6. repec:cuf:journl:y:2013:v:14:i:1:n:2:albuquerque is not listed on IDEAS

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • G34 - Financial Economics - - Corporate Finance and Governance - - - Mergers; Acquisitions; Restructuring; Corporate Governance
    • K22 - Law and Economics - - Regulation and Business Law - - - Business and Securities Law

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:sbs:wpsefe:2005fe07. 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: (Maxine Collett). General contact details of provider: http://edirc.repec.org/data/frcoxuk.html .

    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 CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc 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 RePEc Author Service 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.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.