Berle’s Conception of Shareholder Primacy: A Forgotten Perspective for Reconsideration During the Rise of Finance
Fenner L. Stewart Jr.
Capital University Law School
Seattle University Law Review, Vol. 34, Summer 2011
Osgoode CLPE Research Paper No. 34/2010
Adolf A. Berle is celebrated as the grandfather of modern shareholder primacy, but this glosses over his opposition to how Henry Manne used his argument. If Berle were alive today, he would certainly reject this praise. This is not always appreciated in commentaries of his shareholder primacy argument. For this reason, this article offers a nuanced understanding of Berle’s argument, providing a clear observation point for examining the shift from his shareholder primacy argument to the one of today. From this point of observation, the reader can see distinctions within, and potentials for, the shareholder primacy argument and thus the variety of ways that investor empowerment can develop during the current “rise of finance.”
Number of Pages in PDF File: 43
Keywords: Corporate Governance, Shareholder Primacy, Investor Empowerment, Adolf A. Berle, Rise of Finance
JEL Classification: B25, G30, G38, K22Accepted Paper Series
Date posted: July 30, 2010 ; Last revised: July 8, 2011
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