NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

Juan H. Flores

Department of Economic History
University of Geneva
40, bd du Pont-d’Arve,
CH-1211 Geneva 4, Switzerland

E-Mail: juan.flores@unige.ch

NBER Working Papers and Publications

June 2010The End of Gatekeeping: Underwriters and the Quality of Sovereign Bond Markets, 1815-2007
with Marc Flandreau, Norbert Gaillard, Sebastián Nieto-Parra
in NBER International Seminar on Macroeconomics 2009, Lucrezia Reichlin and Kenneth D. West, organizers
July 2009The End of Gatekeeping: Underwriters and the Quality of Sovereign Bond Markets, 1815-2007
with Marc Flandreau, Norbert Gaillard, Sebastián Nieto-Parra: w15128
We provide a comparison of salient organizational features of primary markets for foreign government debt over the very long run. We focus on output, quality control, information provision, competition, pricing, charging, and signaling. We find that the market setup experienced a radical transformation in the recent period, and we interpret this as resulting from the rise of liability insurance provided by rating agencies. Underwriters have given up their former role as gatekeepers of liquidity and certification agencies to become aggressive competitors in a new Speculative Grade market.

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