Credit Rating Agencies' Accountability: Short Notes on a Global Issue

An earlier version of this paper was published in Global Jurist, Vol. 10, No. 1, Advances, p. 1, 2010

16 Pages Posted: 2 Dec 2009 Last revised: 11 Jan 2013

See all articles by Mauro Bussani

Mauro Bussani

University of Trieste School of Law

Date Written: August 27, 2011

Abstract

In the aftermath of the financial crisis Credit Rating Agencies (CRAs) have come under open criticism in the public and legal debates. The picture that has broken surface is one in which CRAs ended up compromising the quality of their activities in order to facilitate the selling of services, and snatch or defend market shares. Nevertheless, in the US and in Europe the regulatory approaches content themselves with focusing on the same administrative tools that have so far proved to be largely ineffective. This is why scholars and opinion-makers have started questioning the current accountability regimes for CRAs, and the reasonableness of keeping the private for-profit nature of the agencies, instead of straightforwardly transforming them into public bodies. But the answers about the optimal nature of, and the most appropriate accountability model for the agencies may only come from considering a different perspective, which puts in place, not a national/regional plan aimed to fence off local misbehavior, but a global strategy to ensure worldwide effective accountability for CRAs. In this direction, the issue can be tackled under either a centralized-political, or a decentralized-judicial point of view.

Keywords: credit rating agencies, financial crisis, regulatory approaches, U.S. law, E.U law, international financial institutions, tort law, public accountability, global law

JEL Classification: K13, K23, K29, K42

Suggested Citation

Bussani, Mauro, Credit Rating Agencies' Accountability: Short Notes on a Global Issue (August 27, 2011). An earlier version of this paper was published in Global Jurist, Vol. 10, No. 1, Advances, p. 1, 2010. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1515285

Mauro Bussani (Contact Author)

University of Trieste School of Law ( email )

Piazzale Europa 1
Trieste, Trieste 34100
Italy

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