Introduction: Special issue: corporate governance: what do we know and what is different about banks?
This special volume of the Economic Policy Review is designed to foster a better understanding of corporate governance - particularly as it applies to banking firms - among regulators, investors, researchers, and the interested public. The contributors to the volume, specialists in governance, analyze the topic from many perspectives, including law, financial accounting, and financial economics. As they summarize and synthesize a vast literature on vital governance issues, the authors present a framework for understanding corporate governance and identify key areas of future research.
Introduction and appendix to Behavioral Risk Management in the Financial Services Industry: The Role of Culture, Governance, and Financial Reporting
This volume, four years in the making, includes nine research papers that aim to identify and understand the key factors affecting governance and culture in the banking industry. The volume is divided into two complementary parts. Part I introduces the concept of culture and its importance to risk management and financial stability. The articles present a framework for diagnosing and changing culture, describe how corporate culture is shaped, explore the importance of effective risk management, and examine the roles of deferred cash compensation and bank cash holdings in promoting financial ...
The effect of state pension cut legislation on bank values
This study provides an empirical analysis of the impact of Wisconsin and Ohio pension cut legislation on values of banks operating in Wisconsin and Ohio, banks operating in other states in which pension cut legislation was being considered as Wisconsin and Ohio went through its legislative process, and all publicly traded U.S. banks. We find that banks doing business in Wisconsin and Ohio experience positive (negative) stock price reactions to announcements that indicate an increased (a decreased) probability of pension cut legislation. The stock price reactions are positively related to the ...
Caught between Scylla and Charybdis? Regulating bank leverage when there is rent seeking and risk shifting
We consider a model in which banking is characterized by asset substitution moral hazard and managerial underprovision of effort in loan monitoring. The privately optimal bank leverage efficiently balances the benefit of debt in providing the discipline to ensure that the bank monitors its loans against the benefit of equity in attenuating asset-substitution moral hazard. However, when correlated bank failures impose significant social costs, regulators bail out bank creditors. Anticipation of this action generates multiple equilibria, including an equilibrium featuring systemic risk, in ...
This volume of the Economic Policy Review, "Special issue on the economic effects of September 11," explores some of the key economic consequences of the attacks of September 11. The six articles that make up the volume address several important questions: how great were the losses in New York City on September 11 and in the difficult months thereafter? How much will the nation spend to prevent future attacks? Did the destruction of information and infrastructure impair the functioning of the payments and securities settlement systems, and what steps minimize further damage? Will these ...
Corporate governance of financial institutions
We identify the tension created by the dual demands of financial institutions to be value-maximizing entities that also serve the public interest. We highlight the importance of information in addressing the public?s desire for banks to be safe yet innovative. Regulators can choose several approaches to increase market discipline and information production. First, they can mandate information production outside of markets through increased regulatory disclosure. Second, they can directly motivate potential producers of information by changing their incentives. Traditional approaches to bank ...
The effect of changes in ownership structure on performance: evidence from the thrift industry
Restrictions on the ownership structure of a public company may harm the company's performance by preventing owners from choosing the best structure. We examine the stock-price performance and ownership structure, before and after the expiration of anti-takeover regulations, of a sample of thrift institutions that converted from mutual to stock ownership. We find that after the anti-takeover provisions expire, firm performance improves significantly, and the portions of the firm owned by managers, noninstitutional outside blockholders, and the firm's employee stock ownership plan increase. ...
The impact of tax law changes on bank dividend policy, sell-offs, organizational form, and industry structure
This paper investigates the effect at the bank and industry level of a 1996 tax law change allowing commercial banks to elect S-corporation status. By the end of 2007, roughly one in three commercial banks had either opted for or converted to the S-corporation form of organization. Our study analyzes the effect of this conversion on bank dividend payouts. It also examines the effect S-corporation status has on a community bank's likelihood of sell-off and measures a firm's sensitivity to tax rates based on its choice of organizational form. We document that dividend payouts increase ...
Gender and the availability of credit to privately held firms: evidence from the surveys of small business finances
This study analyzes differences by gender in the ownership of privately held U.S. firms and examines the role of gender in the availability of credit. Using data from the nationally representative Surveys of Small Business Finances, which span a period of sixteen years, we document a series of empirical regularities in male- and female-owned firms. Looking at the differences by gender, we find that female-owned firms are 1) significantly smaller, as measured by sales, assets, and employment; 2) younger, as measured by age of the firm; 3) more likely to be organized as proprietorships and less ...