Rights as Signals

Daniel A. Farber

University of California, Berkeley - School of Law

Journal of Legal Studies, Vol. 31, No. 1, Part 1

Because rights operate as trumps over normal governmental decisions, they have an inherent cost. Consequently, by entrenching protection for human rights, governments can signal a willingness to give up power in the short-term to obtain long-term benefits. Investors can infer from this that the government has a low discount rate and is less likely to pose a threat of expropriation. Similarly, when courts vigorously enforce human rights, they dramatize their judicial independence, which is valuable to investors who themselves have no interest in human rights. thus, human rights enforcement may help encourage investment and thereby indirectly foster economic growth.

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Date posted: March 13, 2002  

Suggested Citation

Farber, Daniel A., Rights as Signals. Journal of Legal Studies, Vol. 31, No. 1, Part 1. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=301986

Contact Information

Daniel A. Farber (Contact Author)
University of California, Berkeley - School of Law ( email )
Boalt Hall
Room 894
Berkeley, CA 94720-7200
United States
510-642-0340 (Phone)
510-642-3728 (Fax)
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