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Private Ordering of Public Markets: The Rating Agency Paradox

29 Pages Posted: 4 May 2001  

Steven L. Schwarcz

Duke University School of Law


Although merely private entities, rating agencies have a profound economic impact on global finance. At the same time, these entities have engaged in potential abuses, such as threatening to assign unrequested ratings in order to force companies to use their services. Nonetheless, rating agencies are largely unregulated in the United States and abroad. I examine whether rating agencies should be regulated and, if so, whether it is feasible for individual nations to regulate multinational entities of this type.

Suggested Citation

Schwarcz, Steven L., Private Ordering of Public Markets: The Rating Agency Paradox. University of Illinois Law Review, Vol. 2002, No. 1, 2002; Duke Law School, Public Law Working Paper No. 18. Available at SSRN: or

Steven Schwarcz (Contact Author)

Duke University School of Law ( email )

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