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Regulate Incentives, Not Outcomes

Via Russ Roberts at Cafe Hayek:

What is notable about contemporary reform is that there is little effort to change the incentives that caused bank executives to take the big risks and a huge emphasis on regulating their choices. The implicit assumption seems to be that incentives and the assignment of liability plays only a small role so that choices must be regulated—that is, the market cannot be made to adequately discipline banks. Could such a market-based system be devised? In this paper, I offer evidence from the American National Banking Era (1864-1913) for the ability of incentives to successfully limit losses from bank failures.

Posted in Business, Economics.

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