Research and publications

The Economic Consequences of Legal Origins

In the last decade, economists have produced a considerable body of research suggesting that the historical origin of a country's laws is highly correlated with a broad range of its legal rules and regulations, as well as with economic outcomes. This paper summarizes this evidence and attempts a unified interpretation. It also addresses several objections to the empirical claim that legal origins matter. Finally, it assesses the implications of this research for economic reform. A revisited version of this paper was published in the June 2008 issue of the Journal of Economic Literature.

Author(s) :

Rafael La Porta, Florencio Lopez-de-Silanes, Andrei Shleifer

Summary :

In the last decade, economists have produced a considerable body of research suggesting that the historical origin of a country's laws is highly correlated with a broad range of its legal rules and regulations, as well as with economic outcomes. This paper summarizes this evidence and attempts a unified interpretation. It also addresses several objections to the empirical claim that legal origins matter. Finally, it assesses the implications of this research for economic reform. A revisited version of this paper was published in the June 2008 issue of the Journal of Economic Literature.

Register to download PDF

Register
Type : Working paper
Date : 11/05/2007
Keywords :

Finance and Economics