Law, Finance, and Economic Growth in China
60 Pages Posted: 4 Feb 2003
Date Written: May 7, 2004
China is an important counterexample to the findings in the law, institutions, finance, and growth literature: neither its legal nor financial system is well developed by existing standards, yet it has one of the fastest growing economies. We examine 3 sectors of the economy: the State Sector (state-owned firms), the Listed Sector (publicly listed firms), and the Private Sector (all other firms with various types of private and local government ownership). The law-finance-growth nexus established by existing literature applies to the State and Listed Sectors: with poor legal protections of minority and outside investors, external markets are weak, and the growth of these firms is slow or negative. However, with arguably poorer applicable legal and financial mechanisms, the Private Sector grows much faster than the State and Listed Sectors, and provides most of the economy's growth. This suggests that there exist effective alternative financing channels and governance mechanisms, such as those based on reputation and relationships, to support this growth.
Keywords: Law and finance, economic growth, private sector, corporate governance, reputation and relationships
JEL Classification: O5, K0, G2
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation