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Fiduciari and Firm Liquidity Constraints: The Italian Experience with German-Style Universal Banking

Fohlin, Caroline (1998) Fiduciari and Firm Liquidity Constraints: The Italian Experience with German-Style Universal Banking. Explorations in Economic History, 35 (1). pp. 83-107. ISSN 0014-4983. doi:10.1006/exeh.1997.0690.

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This study presents new evidence on the influence of German-style relationship banking on investment patterns of Italian firms. Bank-affiliated firms were larger than independent firms but invested at lower rates. All firms, particularly newly public firms, demonstrate liquidity sensitivity of investment. Bank attachments apparently yielded no consistent amelioration of these effects. Further, the findings on performance offer little support for the idea that universal banks provide important screening services to investors. The results parallel the German experience and thus, formalized banking relationships appear to have made limited impact on firms' investments in the pre-World War I period.

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Fohlin, Caroline0000-0002-1380-2788
Additional Information:© 1998 Academic Press. My thanks go to Lance Davis, Jeff Dubin, Barry Eichengreen, Stan Engerman, Giovanni Federico, John Latting, Richard Meese, Larry Neal, David Romer, Richard Tilly, Gianni Toniolo, and two anonymous referees as well as to workshop participants at the University of California, Berkeley, Caltech, the University of Illinois, the University of Münster, and Northwestern University and conference participants at the 1996 Congress of the European Association of Historical Economics for helpful discussions and comments on earlier drafts. I am indebted to Francesca Pino-Pongolini and Laura Contini of the Comit Archive for providing important data as well as general guidance in beginning this project. I also thank Teresa Pandolfi of the Bank of Italy archive for providing photocopies of the data source. Financial support from the Joint Committee on Western Europe of the American Council of Learned Societies and the Social Science Research Council (with funds provided by the Ford and Mellon Foundations), the Center for German and European Studies at U.C. Berkeley, the Mellon Foundation Area Studies Fellowship Program, and the National Science Foundation (Grant # SBR-9617799) is gratefully acknowledged.
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American Council of Learned SocietiesUNSPECIFIED
Social Science Research CouncilUNSPECIFIED
Ford FoundationUNSPECIFIED
Andrew W. Mellon FoundationUNSPECIFIED
University of California, BerkeleyUNSPECIFIED
Issue or Number:1
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Official Citation:Caroline Fohlin, Fiduciariand Firm Liquidity Constraints: The Italian Experience with German-Style Universal Banking, Explorations in Economic History, Volume 35, Issue 1, January 1998, Pages 83-107, ISSN 0014-4983, (
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:80959
Deposited By: Tony Diaz
Deposited On:30 Aug 2017 18:26
Last Modified:15 Nov 2021 19:40

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