Concentration in the Israeli Economy and Bank Investment in Nonfinancial Companies

Posted: 5 Sep 1997

See all articles by Lucian A. Bebchuk

Lucian A. Bebchuk

Harvard Law School; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

Louis Kaplow

Harvard Law School; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

Jesse M. Fried

Harvard Law School; European Corporate Governance Institute (ECGI)

Date Written: January 1997

Abstract

In Israel, as in a number of other economies, a few large banks have historically played a major role in the nonfinancial sector. At the end of 1995, the Israeli government appointed the Brodet Committee to examine bank investments in nonfinancial corporations. The Israeli Knesset subsequently adopted the committee's recommendations and imposed major limitations on the role of banks in the nonfinancial sector. These limitations required the two biggest Israeli banks to start selling much of their nonfinancial investments. This paper is based on the research report that we prepared for the Brodet Committee at the request of the Israeli Finance Ministry and Antitrust Authority. We explain why we recommended to the Committee that substantial limitations be imposed on bank investment in nonfinancial companies. We provide a detailed analysis of the effects that bank- conglomerate combinations have in a small economy -- such as Israel's -- that is characterized by a great deal of concentration in both the financial and nonfinancial sectors. In particular, we analyze the effects that bank-conglomerate combinations have on the safety and soundness of banks, on the decisions of the investment funds managed by banks, and on the level of competition in the economy in both the short run and the long run.

Suggested Citation

Bebchuk, Lucian A. and Kaplow, Louis and Fried, Jesse M., Concentration in the Israeli Economy and Bank Investment in Nonfinancial Companies (January 1997). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=11343

Lucian A. Bebchuk (Contact Author)

Harvard Law School ( email )

Cambridge, MA 02138
United States
617-495-3138 (Phone)
617-812-0554 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://www.law.harvard.edu/faculty/bebchuk/

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) ( email )

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Louis Kaplow

Harvard Law School ( email )

1575 Massachusetts Avenue
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United States
617-495-4101 (Phone)
617-496-4880 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://www.law.harvard.edu/faculty/directory/facdir.php?id=32&show=bibliography

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

Jesse M. Fried

Harvard Law School ( email )

1575 Massachusetts
Griswold Hall 506
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States
617-384-8158 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://www.law.harvard.edu/faculty/directory/10289/Fried

European Corporate Governance Institute (ECGI) ( email )

c/o the Royal Academies of Belgium
Rue Ducale 1 Hertogsstraat
1000 Brussels
Belgium

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