Investment Banking: Institutions, Politics, and Law (2nd edition)

ISBN : 9780199544189

Alan D. Morrison; William J. Wilhelm Jr.
362 Pages
156 x 234 mm
Pub date
Sep 2008
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Investment Banking: Institutions, Politics, and Law provides an economic rationale for the dominant role of investment banks in the capital markets, and uses it to explain both the historical evolution of the investment banking industry and also recent changes to its organization. Although investment decisions rely upon price-relevant information, it is impossible to establish property rights over it and hence is very hard to coordinate its exchange. The authors argue that investment banks help to resolve this problem by managing "information marketplaces," within which extra-legal institutions support the production and dissemination of information that is important to investors. Reputations and relationships are more important in fulfilling this role than financial capital. The authors substantiate their theory with reference to the industry's evolution during the last three centuries. They show how investment banking networks were formed, and identify the informal contracts that they supported. This historical development points to tensions between the relational contracting of investment banks and the regulatory impulses of the State, thus providing some explanation for the periodic large-scale State intervention in the operation of capital markets. Their theory also provides a technological explanation for the massive restructuring of the capital markets in recent decades, which the authors argue can be used to think about the likely future direction of the investment banking industry.


1. Introduction
2. Institutional Theory
3. An Institutional Theory of Investment Banking
4. Investment Banking Origins
5. The Rise of the Investment Bank
6. Investment Banking in the Age of Laissez-Faire
7. Leviathan and the Investment Banks
8. The Modern Industrial Revolution
9. Inside the Investment Bank
10. What Next?

About the author: 

Alan Morrison's research is largely concerned with commercial and investment banking. His work has been published in the American Economic Review, the Journal of Financial Economics, the Journal of Business, the Journal of Business Finance and Accounting, the Scottish Journal of Political Economy, the Geneva Papers and Economics Letters. He worked for six years in management consultancy and investment banking before taking his doctorate in Oxford. Since 2000, he has been a University Lecturer at the Said Business School and a fellow of Merton College, University of Oxford.; Professor Wilhelm's research focuses on investment banks and securities offerings. He has written extensively on initial public offerings and his work has been published in the American Economic Review; Journal of Finance; Journal of Financial Economics; The Review of Financial Studies; Journal of Financial Intermediation; Journal of Money, Credit, and Banking; Oxford Review of Economic Policy; and Journal of Applied Corporate Finance. Professor Wilhelm began his academic career in 1988 at the Wallace E. Carroll School of Management at Boston College. Before joining the McIntire School of Commerce at the University of Virginia in 2002, Professor Wilhelm held the American Standard Companies Chair in Management Studies at the Said Business School and was a Professorial Fellow of St Edmund Hall, University of Oxford, where he began serving as a visiting fellow in 1998.

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