Managerial Ownership and the Role of Privatization in Transition Economies: The Case of China
20 Pages Posted: 8 Aug 2012
Date Written: August 7, 2012
Within transition economies, a popular tactic for revitalizing large and inefficient stateowned enterprises (SOEs) is to privatize them. Unfortunately, the empirical evidence related to this issue is equivocal. This study, therefore, explores more deeply what the relationship may be between privatization efforts of SOEs and their financial performance in transition economies. Specifically, we seek to better understand whether privatization reforms per se, or other corporate governance mechanisms that complement or substitute for this effort, are most effective. Using a panel sample of Chinese state-owned public firms over an eight year period from 1999 to 2006, we find that managerial ownership has a more significant impact on firm performance than privatization does. This finding suggests that internal incentives to managers may be more effective than external market mechanisms in economies transitioning from centralized planning to market control. Our results are robust using a wide variety of performance measures and different model specifications.
Keywords: Privatization, Managerial Ownership, Agency Perspective, Institutional Environment, Economic Transition, China
JEL Classification: G34
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation