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2009

Corporations

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Full-Text Articles in Law

The Future Of Shareholder Democracy, Lisa Fairfax Oct 2009

The Future Of Shareholder Democracy, Lisa Fairfax

All Faculty Scholarship

This Article seeks to ascertain the impact of the Securities and Exchange Commission's rejection in 2007 of a proxy access rule, a rule that would have required corporations to include shareholder-nominated candidates on the ballot. On the one hand, the SEC's rejection appears to be a stunning blow to the shareholders' rights campaign because many shareholders' rights advocates have long considered access to the corporate ballot as the "holy grail" of their campaign for increased shareholder power. On the other hand, some corporate experts maintain that characterizing proxy access as the indispensable ingredient for sufficient shareholder influence fails to appreciate …


The Supreme Court’S Impact On Securities Class Actions: An Empirical Assessment Of Tellabs, Adam C. Pritchard, Stephen Choi Aug 2009

The Supreme Court’S Impact On Securities Class Actions: An Empirical Assessment Of Tellabs, Adam C. Pritchard, Stephen Choi

Law & Economics Working Papers Archive: 2003-2009

Using a sample of securities fraud class actions filed between 2003 and 2007, we study the impact of a widely-followed Supreme Court decision from that period, Tellabs, Inc. v. Makor Issues & Rights, Ltd., 551 U.S. 308 (2007). This decision clarified the law with respect to one of the most hotly contested issues in securities litigation: pleading scienter. The Tellabs decision reversed a very lenient Seventh Circuit decision with respect to pleading scienter, but replaced it with a standard that is nonetheless relatively generous to plaintiffs. Looking at opinions resolving motions to dismiss decided before and after that decision, we …


London As Delaware?, Adam C. Pritchard May 2009

London As Delaware?, Adam C. Pritchard

Law & Economics Working Papers Archive: 2003-2009

Regulatory competition has long driven the path of corporate law in the federal system of the United States. Now, jurisdictional competition has spread to exchange listings. New York took an early lead in that competition in the 1990s, but has now been overtaken by London. Can London prevail in the competition for stock listings in the long term? This essay explores that question through the insights offered by Delaware’s dominance in the market for corporate listings. Delaware has prevailed by offering corporate directors a predictable body of that credibly shields directors from the vagaries of political backlash in times of …


Obama's International Tax Plan: A Major Step Forward, Reuven S. Avi-Yonah May 2009

Obama's International Tax Plan: A Major Step Forward, Reuven S. Avi-Yonah

Articles

President Barack Obama last week personally introduced a set of proposals to reform U.S. international taxation that are the most significant advance toward preserving the income tax on cross-border transactions since the enactment of the subpart F rules by the Kennedy administration in 1962. (For prior coverage, see Doc 2009-10047 or 2009 TNT 84-1.) In essence, the Obama proposals introduce a 21stcentury version of the vision begun by Thomas Adams in 1918 and continued by Stanley Surrey in 1961: a world in which source and residence taxation are coordinated so as to achieve the underlying goals of the international tax …


Direct And Derivative Claims In Securities Fraud Litigation, Richard A. Booth May 2009

Direct And Derivative Claims In Securities Fraud Litigation, Richard A. Booth

Working Paper Series

In the typical securities fraud class action under Rule 10b-5, the plaintiff class consists of buyers who seek damages equal to the difference between the price paid for the stock during the fraud period and the lower price that prevails after corrective disclosure. The argument here is that this claim is really an amalgam of direct and derivative claims and that the derivative claims should result in recovery by the corporation for the benefit of all stockholders. There are three types of losses that arise in the typical stock-drop action. First, part of the loss may be attributable to lower …


National Security Review Of Foreign Mergers And Acquisitions Of Domestic Companies In China And The United States, Kenneth Y. Hui Apr 2009

National Security Review Of Foreign Mergers And Acquisitions Of Domestic Companies In China And The United States, Kenneth Y. Hui

Cornell Law School Inter-University Graduate Student Conference Papers

China’s recently enacted Anti-Monopoly Law has received much academic attention. In particular, many articles and comments have been written about Article 31 of the Anti-Monopoly Law, a provision on national security review of foreign mergers and acquisitions of domestic companies. The provision has often been labelled as draconian and protectionist. This paper argues that Article 31 is not necessarily so. Article 31 is actually, to a large extent, in line with the national security provisions found in liberal economies. By taking a comparative approach, this paper will demonstrate the similarities between the national security laws in China and the United …


Behind Close Doors: Governance Issues In Private Equity Driven Industries – The Close Corporation Paradox And Its Impact On Private Equity In The Us And Sweden, Kristian Hermanrud Apr 2009

Behind Close Doors: Governance Issues In Private Equity Driven Industries – The Close Corporation Paradox And Its Impact On Private Equity In The Us And Sweden, Kristian Hermanrud

Cornell Law School Inter-University Graduate Student Conference Papers

Publicly traded companies make up only a small fraction of the vast number of corporations operating in the US today. Only about 10,000 companies are traded publicly while there are roughly 20 million corporations doing business in the US. Likewise, over 245 private corporations’ annual revenues exceed $1 billion. Among these, more than twelve employ more than 50,000 employees. Despite the influence on vast amounts of people and capital legislature has, to a large degree, focused on publicly traded companies. The reasons for this stem, in large, back to the years of the market crash in the early thirties and …


The Economics Of Deal Risk: Allocating Risk Through Mac Clauses In Business Combination Agreements, Robert T. Miller Apr 2009

The Economics Of Deal Risk: Allocating Risk Through Mac Clauses In Business Combination Agreements, Robert T. Miller

Working Paper Series

In any large corporate acquisition, there is a delay between the time the parties enter into a merger agreement (the signing) and the time the merger is effected and the purchase price paid (the closing). During this period, the business of one of the parties may deteriorate. When this happens to a target company in a cash deal, or to either party in a stock-for-stock deal, the counterparty may no longer want to consummate the transaction. The primary contractual protection parties have in such situations is the merger agreement’s “material adverse change” (MAC) clause. Such clauses are heavily negotiated and …


The Story Of Hewlett-Packard, Barbara Black Jan 2009

The Story Of Hewlett-Packard, Barbara Black

Faculty Articles and Other Publications

With the development of the modern corporation, corporate boards have been the locus of corporate authority, and particularly since the 1980s, boards and their performance have been under intense scrutiny. Nevertheless, corporate law has not developed a consistent theory for what boards are supposed to do; instead, it sends mixed messages about the functions and expectations of boards and the appropriate people to sit on them. The HP saga illustrates some of the dilemmas faced by directors confronted by these competing pressures.


Two Ways To Think About The Punishment Of Corporations, Albert Alschuler Jan 2009

Two Ways To Think About The Punishment Of Corporations, Albert Alschuler

Faculty Working Papers

This article compares the criminal punishment of corporations in the twenty-first century with two ancient legal practices—deodand (the punishment of animals and objects that have produced harm) and frankpledge (the punishment of all members of a group when one member of the group has avoided apprehension for a crime). It argues that corporate criminal punishment is a mistake but that viewing it as frankpledge is less ridiculous than viewing it as deodand. The article considers the implications of the choice between these concepts for standards of corporate guilt and for the sentencing of corporate offenders. After a brief historical description …


London As Delaware?, Adam C. Pritchard Jan 2009

London As Delaware?, Adam C. Pritchard

Articles

In the United States, state corporate law determines most questions of internal corporate governance - the role of directors; the allocation of authority between directors, managers, and shareholders; etc. - while federal law governs questions of disclosure to shareholders - annual reports, proxy statements, and periodic filings. Despite substantial incursions by Congress, most recently with the Sarbanes-Oxley Act, this dividing line between state and federal law persists, so state law arguably has the most immediate effect on corporate governance outcomes.


Domestic Effects Of The Foreign Activities Of U.S. Multinationals, Mihir A. Desai, C. Fritz Foley, James R. Hines Jr. Jan 2009

Domestic Effects Of The Foreign Activities Of U.S. Multinationals, Mihir A. Desai, C. Fritz Foley, James R. Hines Jr.

Articles

Do firms investing abroad simultaneously reduce their domestic activity? This paper analyzes the relationship between the domestic and foreign operations of US manufacturing firms between 1982 and 2004 by instrumenting for changes in foreign operations with GDP growth rates of the foreign countries in which they invest. Estimates produced using this instrument indicate that 10 percent greater foreign investment is associated with 2.6 percent greater domestic investment, and 10 percent greater foreign employee compensation is associated with 3.7 percent greater domestic employee compensation. These results do not support the popular notion that expansions abroad reduce a firm’s domestic activity, instead …


From Loyalty To Conflict: Addressing Fiduciary Duty At The Officer Level, Usha Rodrigues Jan 2009

From Loyalty To Conflict: Addressing Fiduciary Duty At The Officer Level, Usha Rodrigues

Scholarly Works

Conflicts of interest are the quintessential agency cost-the constant, lurking danger that agents may seek their own personal gain, rather than the good of the corporation. Yet many corporate employees lack knowledge as to exactly what constitutes a conflict of interest. This ignorance facilitated the kind of fraud seen in Enron, WorldCom, and the options backdating scandals, and may help explain the out-sized payouts that many high-level corporate officers received even as the financial institutions they headed verged on self-destruction. Each case required not only affirmative fraudulent behavior on the part of a few, but also the tacit acceptance of …


London As Delaware?, Adam C. Pritchard Jan 2009

London As Delaware?, Adam C. Pritchard

Articles

Jurisdictional competition in corporate law has long been a staple of academic-and sometimes, political-debate in the United States. State corporate law, by long-standing tradition in the United States, determines most questions of internal corporate governance-the role of boards of directors, the allocation of authority between directors, managers and shareholders, etc.-while federal law governs questions of disclosure to shareholders-annual reports, proxy statements, and periodic filings. Despite substantial incursions by Congress, most recently in the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002, this dividing line between state and federal law persists, so state law arguably has the most immediate impact on corporate governance outcomes.


International Law: Private Law In United States Law, Reuven S. Avi-Yonah Jan 2009

International Law: Private Law In United States Law, Reuven S. Avi-Yonah

Book Chapters

This article discusses some aspects of the development of international economic law in the United States since the end of World War I and the impact it had on the development of international economic law generally, focusing specifically on the three areas in which U.S. law had the most significant impact on international economic law: international trade and investment, international taxation, and international antitrust measures. In general, in all three areas U.S. law had considerable influence on the development of international economic law in the twentieth century. However, the degree of influence in these and other areas varied depending on …


Prosecuting Worker Endangerment: The Need For Stronger Criminal Penalties For Violations Of The Occupational Safety And Health Act, David M. Uhlmann Jan 2009

Prosecuting Worker Endangerment: The Need For Stronger Criminal Penalties For Violations Of The Occupational Safety And Health Act, David M. Uhlmann

Articles

A recent spate of construction deaths in New York City, similar incidents in Las Vegas, and scores of fatalities in recent years at mines and industrial facilities across the country have highlighted the need for greater commitment to worker safety in the United States and stronger penalties for violators of the worker safety laws. Approximately 6,000 workers are killed on the job each year1—and thousands more suffer grievous injuries—yet penalties for worker safety violations remain appallingly small, and criminal prosecutions are almost non-existent. In recent years, most of the criminal prosecutions for worker safety violations have been brought by the …


Allocating Business Profits For Tax Purposes: A Proposal To Adopt A Formulary Profit Split, Reuven S. Avi-Yonah, Kimberly A. Clausing, Michael C. Durst Jan 2009

Allocating Business Profits For Tax Purposes: A Proposal To Adopt A Formulary Profit Split, Reuven S. Avi-Yonah, Kimberly A. Clausing, Michael C. Durst

Articles

The current system of taxing the income of multinational firms in the United States is flawed across multiple dimensions. The system provides an artificial tax incentive to earn income in low-tax countries, rewards aggressive tax planning, and is not compatible with any common metrics of efficiency. The U.S. system is also notoriously complex; observers are nearly unanimous in lamenting the heavy compliance burdens and the impracticality of coherent enforcement. Further, despite a corporate tax rate one standard deviation above that of other OECD countries, the U.S. corporate tax system raises relatively little revenue, due in part to the shifting of …


Environmental Crime Comes Of Age: The Evolution Of Criminal Enforcement In The Environmental Regulatory Scheme, David M. Uhlmann Jan 2009

Environmental Crime Comes Of Age: The Evolution Of Criminal Enforcement In The Environmental Regulatory Scheme, David M. Uhlmann

Articles

The Rivers and Harbors Act of 1899 often is considered the first environmental criminal statute because it contains strict liability provisions that make it a misdemeanor to discharge refuse into navigable waters of the United States without a permit. When Congress passed the Rivers and Harbors Act, however, it was far more concerned with preventing interference with interstate commerce than environmental protection. For practical purposes, the environmental crimes program in the United States dates to the development of the modem environmental regulatory system during the 1970s, and amendments to the environmental laws during the 1980s, which upgraded criminal violations of …


The Two Faces Of Lawyers: Professional Ethics And Business Compliance With Regulation, Christine E. Parker, Robert E. Rosen, Vibeke Lehmann Nielsen Jan 2009

The Two Faces Of Lawyers: Professional Ethics And Business Compliance With Regulation, Christine E. Parker, Robert E. Rosen, Vibeke Lehmann Nielsen

Articles

No abstract provided.


Director Elections And The Role Of Proxy Advisors, Stephen Choi, Jill E. Fisch, Marcel Kahan Jan 2009

Director Elections And The Role Of Proxy Advisors, Stephen Choi, Jill E. Fisch, Marcel Kahan

All Faculty Scholarship

Using a dataset of proxy recommendations and voting results for uncontested director elections from 2005 and 2006 at S&P 1500 companies, we examine how advisors make their recommendations. Of the four firms we study, Institutional Shareholder Services (ISS), Proxy Governance (PGI), Glass Lewis (GL), and Egan Jones (EJ), ISS has the largest market share and is widely regarded as the most influential. We find that the four proxy advisory firms differ substantially from each other both in their willingness to issue a withhold recommendation and in the factors that affect their recommendation. It is not clear that these differences, or …


Confronting The Circularity Problem In Private Securities Litigation, Jill E. Fisch Jan 2009

Confronting The Circularity Problem In Private Securities Litigation, Jill E. Fisch

All Faculty Scholarship

Many critics argue that private securities litigation fails effectively either to deter corporate misconduct or to compensate defrauded investors. In particular, commentators reason that damages reflect socially inefficient transfer payments—the so-called circularity problem. Fox and Mitchell address the circularity problem by identifying new reasons why private litigation is an effective deterrent, focusing on the role of disclosure in improving corporate governance. The corporate governance rationale for securities regulation is more powerful than the authors recognize. By collecting and using corporate information in their trading decisions, informed investors play a critical role in enhancing market efficiency. This efficiency, in turn, allows …


Feminizing Capital: A Corporate Imperative, Darren Rosenblum Jan 2009

Feminizing Capital: A Corporate Imperative, Darren Rosenblum

Elisabeth Haub School of Law Faculty Publications

This Article argues that Norway’s Corporate Board Quota Law (“CBQ”) fosters a productive symbiosis between the public and private spheres. Recent studies indicate that higher numbers of women in executive positions result in stronger rates of corporate return on equity (“ROE”). Countries with higher levels of women's political representation also tend to have higher levels of economic growth. Increasing women's workforce participation outside the home can drive overall economic growth. These factors prompted the CBQ's proponents to argue for the economic imperative of women's corporate leadership. The CBQ will not only ameliorate gender inequality, but will bring new life to …


Competing Narratives In Corporate Bankruptcy: Debtor In Control Vs. No Time To Spare, David A. Skeel Jr. Jan 2009

Competing Narratives In Corporate Bankruptcy: Debtor In Control Vs. No Time To Spare, David A. Skeel Jr.

All Faculty Scholarship

When a company like Chrysler or United Airlines files for bankruptcy, it offers narrative explaining the way out of its predicament. In support of its claim that the business is worth saving, the company may argue that it simply needs time to renegotiate its obligations with its creditors. Alternatively, it may say that asset values are deteriorating rapidly and it is imperative that the bankruptcy court immediately approve a sale of the company, or some other rapid disposition. These two possibilities correspond to the principal resolution narratives in current Chapter 11 bankruptcy practice, which I refer to as Debtor in …


How To Prevent Hard Cases From Making Bad Law: Bear Stearns, Delaware And The Strategic Use Of Comity, Marcel Kahan, Edward B. Rock Jan 2009

How To Prevent Hard Cases From Making Bad Law: Bear Stearns, Delaware And The Strategic Use Of Comity, Marcel Kahan, Edward B. Rock

All Faculty Scholarship

The Bear Stearns/JP Morgan Chase merger placed Delaware between a rock and a hard place. On the one hand, the deal’s unprecedented deal protection measures – especially the 39.5% share exchange agreement – were probably invalid under current Delaware doctrine because they rendered the Bear Stearns shareholders’ approval rights entirely illusory. On the other hand, if a Delaware court were to enjoin a deal pushed by the Federal Reserve and the Treasury and arguably necessary to prevent a collapse of the international financial system, it would invite just the sort of federal intervention that would undermine Delaware’s role as the …


Unentrapped, William W. Bratton Jan 2009

Unentrapped, William W. Bratton

All Faculty Scholarship

No abstract provided.


Neoclassicism And The Separation Of Ownership And Control, Herbert J. Hovenkamp Jan 2009

Neoclassicism And The Separation Of Ownership And Control, Herbert J. Hovenkamp

All Faculty Scholarship

"Separation of ownership and control" is a phrase whose history will forever be associated with Adolf A. Berle and Gardiner C. Means' The Modern Corporation and Private Property (1932), as well as with Institutionalist economics, Legal Realism, and the New Deal. Within that milieu the large publicly held business corporation became identified with excessive managerial power at the expense of stockholders, social irresponsibility, and internal inefficiency. Neoclassical economists both then and ever since have generally been critical, both of the historical facts that Berle and Means purported to describe and of the conclusions that they drew. In fact, however, within …


The Private Life Of Environmental Treaties, Natasha Affolder Jan 2009

The Private Life Of Environmental Treaties, Natasha Affolder

All Faculty Publications

The gravitational pull of environmental treaties is felt not only by states. Yet international lawyers almost exclusively focus on states to explain treaty compliance, measure treaty implementation, and assess treaty effectiveness. This essay draws attention to a phenomenon that falls outside traditional boundaries of treaty analysis: the efforts of private corporations that aim at complying with environmental treaties. Existing models of treaty implementation are inadequate to explain these direct interactions between corporations and treaties. The dominant grammar of treaty “compliance” equally fails to fit. Using a little-studied example - the UNESCO World Heritage Convention - this essay highlights the phenomenon …


Double Tax Treaties: An Introduction, Reuven S. Avi-Yonah Jan 2009

Double Tax Treaties: An Introduction, Reuven S. Avi-Yonah

Book Chapters

The existing network of more than 2,500 bilateral double tax treaties (DTTs) represents an important part of international law. The current DTTs are all based on two models, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and United Nations (UN) model DTTs, which in turn are based on models developed by the League of Nations between 1927 and 1946. Despite some differences that will be discussed below, all DTTs are remarkably similar in the topics covered (even the order of articles are always the same) and in their language. About 75% of the actual words of any given DTT are …


Cause For Concern: Causation And Federal Securities Fraud, Jill E. Fisch Jan 2009

Cause For Concern: Causation And Federal Securities Fraud, Jill E. Fisch

All Faculty Scholarship

The Supreme Court’s decision in Dura Pharmaceuticals dramatically changed federal securities fraud litigation. The Dura decision itself said little, but counseled lower courts to fashion new requirements of causation and harm modeled upon common law tort principles. These instructions have led lower courts to craft a series of confusing and inconsistent decisions that incorporate little of the reasoning upon which the common law principles are based. This Article accepts the Dura challenge and examines both common law causation principles and their applicability to federal securities fraud. In so doing, the Article identifies the failure of the federal courts properly to …