Motivated by a recognition of the importance of financial institutions, a gap in corporate governance literature, and the recent financial crisis, this dissertation examines the economics of financial firms, their governance practices, and governance-performance links in such firms. The research combines an extensive literature review, microeconomic modeling, secondary data collection, and a set of empirical analyses. It focuses on the board of directors as the key governance mechanism that is subject to policy making by both public and private decision makers. Within the wide range of financial firms, it focuses on firms in the business of managing client assets, where the most obvious gap in governance literature is.
This document was submitted as a dissertation in August 2011 in partial fulfillment of the requirements of the doctoral degree in public policy analysis at the Pardee RAND Graduate School. The faculty committee that supervised and approved the dissertation consisted of Charles Wolf (Chair), Steven Garber and Richard Roll.
This report is part of the RAND Corporation dissertation series. PRGS dissertations are produced by graduate fellows of the Pardee RAND Graduate School, the world's leading producer of Ph.D.'s in policy analysis. The dissertations are supervised, reviewed, and approved by a PRGS faculty committee overseeing each dissertation.
Permission is given to duplicate this electronic document for personal use only, as long as it is unaltered and complete. Copies may not be duplicated for commercial purposes. Unauthorized posting of RAND PDFs to a non-RAND Web site is prohibited. RAND PDFs are protected under copyright law. For information on reprint and linking permissions, please visit the RAND Permissions page.
The RAND Corporation is a nonprofit institution that helps improve policy and decisionmaking through research and analysis. RAND's publications do not necessarily reflect the opinions of its research clients and sponsors.