The Origins of the Market for Corporate Law

Sarath Sanga*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

I study the origins of the market for corporate charters and the emergence of Delaware as the leader of this market. Specifically, I assemble new data on 19th- and 20th-century corporations to evaluate two widely held beliefs: (1) the U.S. Supreme Court is responsible for enabling a national market for corporate charters in the 19th century and (2) Delaware became the leader in this market only because New Jersey (the initial leader) repealed its extremely liberal corporate laws in 1913. I argue against both claims: The Supreme Court always opposed a national market for corporate charters, and New Jersey's decline began a decade before its 1913 repeal. It is more likely that the market for corporate charters emerged as a collateral consequence of interstate commerce and that New Jersey declined because Delaware and other states simply copied its laws.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)369-406
Number of pages38
JournalAmerican Law and Economics Review
Volume24
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - 2022

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Finance
  • Law

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'The Origins of the Market for Corporate Law'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this