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Corporate Governance, Competition, and Political PartiesExplaining Corporate Governance Change in Europe$
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Roger M. Barker

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780199576814

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199576814.001.0001

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The Case of Italy: Everything Changes, Everything Stays the Same

The Case of Italy: Everything Changes, Everything Stays the Same

(p.256) 10 The Case of Italy: Everything Changes, Everything Stays the Same
Corporate Governance, Competition, and Political Parties

Roger M. Barker

Oxford University Press

Italy had less competitive product markets than Germany by the late 1990s, suggesting that producers continued to benefit from economic rents. Consistent with the hypothesis of this book, it also experienced less firm‐level corporate governance change. A distinctive feature of the Italian case was the disparity between de jure and de facto corporate governance outcomes. Whereas pro‐shareholder legislative reform was introduced by the Prodi government in the late 1990s – as a part of Italy's drive to achieve membership of EMU – this did not exert much impact on actual firm‐level behavior. Economic rents represented an obstacle to the successful implementation of legislative corporate governance reform, as they increased the private benefits of control to blockholders.

Keywords:   Italy, case study, EMU, technocrats

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