IDEAS home Printed from
MyIDEAS: Login to save this paper or follow this series

Private versus Public Ownership: Investment, Ownership Distribution, and Optimality

  • Salman Shah

    (University of Toronto)

  • Anjan V. Thakor

    (Washington University in St. Louis)

Examined in this paper is the choice between private and public incorporation of an asset for an entrepreneur (asset owner) who hires a manager and with superior information about the asset's return distribution. Public sale of equity is shown to be the preferred alternative when (a) capital market issue costs are low or (b) the asset's idiosyncratic risk is high and the owner is either sufficiently risk averse or sufficiently 'optimistic' about the asset's expected return. Thus, those assets deemed most valuable by their owners will tend to be publicly incorporated. The paper also explores the impact of incorporation mode--private versus public--and information structure on the firm's investment policy and ownership distribution.

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:
Download Restriction: no

Paper provided by EconWPA in its series Finance with number 0411026.

in new window

Length: 20 pages
Date of creation: 11 Nov 2004
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:wpa:wuwpfi:0411026
Note: Type of Document - pdf; pages: 20
Contact details of provider: Web page:

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. Leland, Hayne E & Pyle, David H, 1977. "Informational Asymmetries, Financial Structure, and Financial Intermediation," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 32(2), pages 371-87, May.
  2. Ross, Stephen A., 1976. "The arbitrage theory of capital asset pricing," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 13(3), pages 341-360, December.
  3. Bhattacharya, Sudipto & Pfleiderer, Paul, 1985. "Delegated portfolio management," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 36(1), pages 1-25, June.
  4. Roger B. Myerson, 1978. "Optimal Auction Design," Discussion Papers 362, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
  5. Rogerson, William P, 1985. "Repeated Moral Hazard," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 53(1), pages 69-76, January.
  6. Trueman, Brett, 1983. " Optimality of the Disclosure of Private Information in a Production-Exchange Economy," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 38(3), pages 913-24, June.
  7. Shanken, Jay, 1982. " The Arbitrage Pricing Theory: Is It Testable?," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 37(5), pages 1129-40, December.
  8. Campbell, Tim S & Kracaw, William A, 1980. " Information Production, Market Signalling, and the Theory of Financial Intermediation," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 35(4), pages 863-82, September.
  9. Bhattacharya, Sudipto & Ritter, Jay R, 1983. "Innovation and Communication: Signalling with Partial Disclosure," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 50(2), pages 331-46, April.
  10. Roll, Richard, 1978. "Ambiguity when Performance is Measured by the Securities Market Line," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 33(4), pages 1051-69, September.
  11. Heckerman, Donald G., 1975. "Motivating managers to make investment decisions," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 2(3), pages 273-292, September.
  12. Paul R. Milgrom, 1981. "Good News and Bad News: Representation Theorems and Applications," Bell Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 12(2), pages 380-391, Autumn.
  13. Holmstrom, Bengt R & Weiss, Laurence, 1985. "Managerial Incentives, Investment, and Aggregate Implications: Scale Effects," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 52(3), pages 403-25, July.
  14. 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.
  15. Joseph E. Stiglitz, 1973. "The Theory of 'Screening', Education, and the Distribution of Income," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 354, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
  16. Campbell, Tim S., 1979. "Optimal Investment Financing Decisions and the Value of Confidentiality," Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis, Cambridge University Press, vol. 14(05), pages 913-924, December.
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:wpa:wuwpfi:0411026. 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: (EconWPA)

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.