Friedman 50 years later

Shareholders Don’t Always Want to Maximize Shareholder Value

Oliver Hart, winner of the 2016 Nobel Prize for economics, reflects on how the world has changed since Milton Friedman published his famous essay...

Pursuing Stakeholder Capitalism Is an Impossible Task When Stakeholders Have Different Beliefs

Can companies really attempt to benefit all stakeholders, when stakeholders rarely agree on the best course of action? A new study examines...

What Stakeholder Capitalism Can Learn From Milton Friedman

Instead of ridiculing the Friedman doctrine and proclaiming its death, advocates of stakeholder capitalism and responsible investing, like me, can learn a...

The Illusory Promise of “Stakeholderism”: Why Embracing Stakeholder Governance Would Fail Stakeholders

Stakeholderism—granting corporate leaders discretion to give weight to the interest of all stakeholders—should not be expected to deliver its purported benefits to...

Serving Shareholders Doesn’t Mean Putting Profit Above All Else

The time has come for companies, economists, and society to abandon the argument that the only responsibility of business is to maximize profits. Editor’s note:...

Diversifying Corporate Boards — the Best Way Toward a Balanced Shareholder/Stakeholder System of Corporate Governance

Boards can recognize that their shareholders have needs beyond financial wealth maximization. Making corporate boards representative and diverse works better than co-determination...

Friedman’s Principle, 50 Years Later

In the mid-1980s, Milton Friedman’s view that the only social responsibility of business is to increase its profits became dominant in business...


Why Have Uninsured Depositors Become De Facto Insured?

Due to a change in how the FDIC resolves failed banks, uninsured deposits have become de facto insured. Not only is this dangerous for risk in the banking system, it is not what Congress intends the FDIC to do, writes Michael Ohlrogge.

Merger Law Reaches Acquirer Incentives and Private Equity Strategies

Steven C. Salop argues that Section 7 of the Clayton Act prohibits mergers in which the acquiring firm’s unilateral incentives and business strategy are likely to lessen market competition.

Tim Wu Responds to Letter by Former Agency Chief Economists

Former special assistant to the president for technology and competition policy Tim Wu responds to the November 27 letter signed by former chief economists at the Federal Trade Commission and Justice Department Antitrust Division calling for a separation of the legal and economic analysis in the draft Merger Guidelines.

Can the Public Moderate Social Media?

ProMarket student editor Surya Gowda reviews the arguments made by Paul Gowder in his new book, The Networked Leviathan: For Democratic Platforms.

Uninhibited Campaign Donations Risks Creating Oligarchy

In new research, Valentino Larcinese and Alberto Parmigiani find that the 1986 Reagan tax cuts led to greater campaign spending from wealthy individuals, who benefited the most from this policy. The authors argue that a very permissive system of political finance, combined with the erosion of tax progressivity, created the conditions for the mutual reinforcement of economic and political disparities. The result was an inequality spiral hardly compatible with democratic ideals.