Modern Public Companies? They Didn't Start in Rome
FINANCE |

Modern Public Companies? They Didn't Start in Rome

SO MANUELA GERANIO MAINTAINS IN A PAPER WRITTEN WITH COLLEAGUE GEOFFREY POITRAS

The study of history requires that scholars analyze primary sources. There is no place for misinterpretations that occur when researchers do not take into account the context in which events happen. One could otherwise jump to wrong conclusions, such as that the transfer of shares occurred during the late Roman Republic, around 50 BC. The claim is based on the alleged existence of trading in ‘shares’ of societates publicanorum, corporations that offered public services such as road construction and tax collection.
 
Geoffrey Poitras (Simon Fraser University) and Manuela Geranio (Department of Finance, Bocconi) demonstrated that this claim can not be supported in their paper Trading of shares in the Societates Publicanorum?, published in Explorations in Economic History. “Tax collection organizations in late Roman Republic were nothing like modern public limited companies”, Manuela Geranio says.
 
“The equites, that is the knights who could aspire to become members of the societates, were a minority of the population and could be held personally responsible for the company’s liabilities. The societates had no legal personality. All members should agree with the appointment of new sub-members and in any case these appointments did not constitute a sale of shares”. The modern stock exchange requires that shares are associated with risks and returns, that they are freely transferable, that there is a speculative goal: none of these assumptions was true in Roman times. Transfer of goods, currencies, and government bonds will precede the transfer of shares that will occur only the 17th century. “It is necessary to carry out careful analysis of the historical, legal and institutional context before offering appealing, but debatable interpretations”, Manuela Geranio says.

Read more about this topic:
Tracking the Arrow of Time to Understand the Present. By Guido Alfani
Giuseppe Berta. From Henry Ford to Steve Jobs: The (French) Evolution of Entrepreneurship
Maristella Botticini. Culture and Demographics: What We Can Learn from Jewish History
Andrea Colli. How, When and Why the Benetton Family Became Edizione Ltd
Beatrice Manzoni. Wonderful Building, Woeful Planning in Edinburgh
Elisabetta Merlo. Corporate Heritage: A Competitive Advantage for Companies
Mara Squicciarini. How Important Are School Curricula for a Country’s Development? Very
Guido Tabellini. From Florence to San Francisco: Good Institutions Attract Creative People
Tamas Vonyo. The Myth of the Marshall Plan and Its Effects on Growth
The Ricordi Archives and the Value of Memory. Interview with Pierluigi Ledda
 

by Claudio Todesco

News

All News
  • COVID: The Multifaceted Truth in the Case of Lombardy

    A strand of research by Alessia Melegaro aims to reconstruct the early stages of the epidemic and the reasons why it hit the region so hard  

  • Quantum Physics and Statistical Physics for Machine Learning Meet at Bocconi

    In the early days of next week the University will virtually host 300 participants of the ELLIS Workshop on Quantum and Physics Based Machine Learning  

Seminars

  July 2020  
Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat Sun
    1 2 3 4 5
6 7 8 9 10 11 12
13 14 15 16 17 18 19
20 21 22 23 24 25 26
27 28 29 30 31    

Seminars      

All Seminars
  • Il regolamento europeo sui prospetti informativi
    Business law

    Welcome Address Piergaetano Marchetti, Università Bocconi   Coordinator Giovanni Strampelli, Università Bocconi   Introduction Guido Ferrarini, Università di Genova   Speakers Danny Busch, Radboud University, Nijmegen;   Antonella Sciarrone Alibrandi, Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore, Milano;   Paolo Giudici, Libera Università di Bolzano;   Michele Siri, Università di Genova   Conclusions Marco Ventoruzzo, Università Bocconi

    Webinar

  • Oh, What an UnTangled Web We Weave: The Abnormal Structure of Illegal Digital Marketplace Communities

    JOHN HULLAND, University of Georgia

    Webinar