Many of the world’s largest firms have recently announced their intention to reduce carbon emissions over the coming decades. The financial sector claims to have mobilized over $130 trillion in support of the net zero transition, and 33 percent of the G20’s largest companies by revenue have set a net zero target in alignment with the goals of the Paris Agreement. Even Shell, an oil supermajor and for a long time a bête noir of climate campaigners, has set itself the target to “become a net-zero emissions energy business by 2050.”
Against a backdrop of lackadaisical climate policy, that sounds … Read more
Climate change is one of today’s most salient policy challenges. Under the Paris Agreement, 195 governments agreed to limit temperature increases to well below 2, preferably 1.5, degrees centigrade relative to pre-industrial levels. Since the magnitude of global warming is roughly proportional to the amount of carbon in the atmosphere, the agreement in effect specified a “carbon budget.” To stay within that budget, emission reductions equivalent to what was forced upon us by the worst pandemic in 100 years need to occur every two years throughout the 2020s and beyond. Clearly, just “doing less” is not going to cut it … Read more
In a recent paper, we explore how globalization has affected the operation of securities markets and the challenges this poses for their regulation. The paper is part of the first phase of the New Special Study of the Securities Markets Project.
Securities markets have experienced unprecedented levels of cross-border activity over the past 30 years. Three secular trends have contributed to this phenomenon of globalization. First, liberalization: the removal of national foreign exchange controls and barriers to trade and investment. Second, the growth of collective investment, encouraged by favorable tax treatment of retirement saving. This has fostered a shift … Read more
In the last few years, a source of financing for start-ups, known as crowdfunding, has become widely available. It involves raising capital from a large number of individuals, each of whom typically contributes a small sum. The internet has lowered the costs of crowdfunding by facilitating the dissemination of information about small projects, and its use has grown exponentially, with some $34 billion being raised worldwide through crowdfunding in 2015 alone.
While the availability of crowdfunding is clearly good news for entrepreneurs, its merits for those providing the funding are less certain. Because funders typically put only small sums into … Read more
Stock market prices and the market for corporate control are both crucial elements of the corporate governance matrix within which public companies operate. Share prices constitute highly visible signals of investor perceptions of corporate performance that provide cues for governance responses by directors, managers and shareholders. If not neutered by defensive tactics, the market for corporate control can be a potent corrective mechanism in circumstances where the incumbent management team is failing to create shareholder value, with potential acquirers seeking to obtain control on the assumption they can improve matters. Share prices in turn play an important role in the … Read more