NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

NBER Working Papers by Tarun Khanna

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Working Papers

September 2007Testing Limits to Policy Reversal: Evidence from Indian Privatizations
with Siddhartha G. Dastidar, Raymond Fisman: w13427
We examine the effect of regime change on privatization using the 2004 election surprise in India. The pro-reform BJP was unexpectedly defeated by a less reformist coalition. Stock prices of government-controlled companies that had been slated for definite privatization by the BJP dropped by 3.5 percent relative to private firms. Surprisingly, government-controlled companies that were only under study for possible privatization fell by 7.5 percent relative to private firms. We interpret this as evidence of investor belief of policy irreversibility, where reforms may reach a stage beyond which future regimes have difficulty reversing those policies. Further analysis suggests that layoffs, combined with the privatization announcement, served as a credible commitment to the government's priva...
July 2004The Evolution of Concentrated Ownership in India Broad patterns and a History of the Indian Software Industry
with Krishna Palepu: w10613
As in many countries (Canada, France, Germany, Japan, Italy, Sweden), concentrated ownership is a ubiquitous feature of the Indian private sector over the past seven decades. Yet, unlike in most countries, the identity of the primary families responsible for the concentrated ownership changes dramatically over time, perhaps even more than it does in the U.S. during the same time period. It does not appear that concentrated ownership in India is entirely associated with the ills that the literature has recently ascribed to concentrated ownership in emerging markets. If the concentrated owners are not exclusively, or even primarily, engaged in rent-seeking and entry-deterring behavior, concentrated ownership may not be inimical to competition. Indeed, as a response to competition, we argue t...
February 1999Emerging Market Business Groups, Foreign Investors, and Corporate Governance
with Krishna Palepu: w6955
We examine the interaction between three kinds of concentrated owners commonly found in an emerging market: family-run business groups, domestic financial institutions, and foreign financial institutions. Using data from India in the early 1990s, we find evidence that domestic international investors are poor monitors, and that foreign institutional investors are good monitors. Whereas affiliates of those groups that attract foreign institutional investment are no more difficult to monitor than are unaffiliated firms, we find that group affiliation reduces the likelihood of foreign institutional investment. More transparent groups (where greater transparency is proxied for by a lower incidence of intra-group financial transactions) are more likely to attract such investment. We conclude...

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