Transparency and economic growth have become buzzwords in the economic and political debate in recent years. On the one hand, a lack of transparency is used as an ex post explanation for corporate scandals such as Enron, WorldCom and Parmalat and bank scandals such as Société Général with assumed effects on economic growth. On the other hand, transparency is advocated as an ex ante driver of improved economic growth, as in the Lisbon Agenda with its use of benchmarking (and the Open Co-ordination Method). Few research reports have tried to link transparency to economic growth. Transparency is a multidimensional and situation-related word, with information asymmetry as a kind of lowest common denominator. This chapter addresses optimal transparency concerning macroeconomic influences on the individual firm. It discusses to what extent the implementation as of January 2005 of the International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS) for listed consolidated European firms will contribute to a reduced information asymmetry, lower agency costs, lower cost of capital, increased investment and to higher economic growth at the macro level.
Oxelheim, Lars (2008),
"Macroeconomic Turbulence: Corporate Performance, Transparency and Economic Growth".
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