PATH-DEPENDENCY AND CORPORATE GOVERNANCE IN ITALY: THE POLITICAL ORIGINS OF DEBT FINANCING

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Antonio Nicita, Riccardo Vannini

DOI:10.22495/cocv4i4c4p8

Abstract

In this paper we investigate the emergence and the co-evolution of institutional complementarities between debt and equity as alternative financial instruments in the case of Italy. We focus on the
evolution of Italian firms (related to the benchmark years from 1952 to 1991). Through the data
collected we observed the collaterals that firms were able to transfer to loan institutes. We also
examined the factors which made difficult to switch to equity financing, comparing the rate of
profitability of Italian firms with alternative investments. The results show a financial structure for
Italian firms that rely exclusively on debt, independently of the public or private nature of firms’
property and of the economic sector. This anomaly seems to be the consequence of path-dependencies
between “political origins” and firm’s governance structure in Italy.

Keywords: Corporate Governance, Debt Financing, Equity Financing

How to cite this paper: Nicita, A., & Vannini, R. (2007). Path-dependency and corporate governance in Italy: The political origins of debt financing. [Special Issue]. Corporate Ownership & Control, 4(4-4), 92-105. http://doi.org/10.22495/cocv4i4c4p8