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Tag Archives | value extraction

With working Americans’ survival at stake, the US is bailing out the richest

By Morris Pearl  and William Lazonick “Without significant oversight, Congress’s economic relief bill will leave millions of everyday Americans in financial peril Amid a humanitarian crisis compounded by mass layoffs and collapsing economic activity, the last course our legislators should be following is the one they appear to be on right now: bailing out shareholders and […]

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Innovative Enterprise Solves the Agency Problem: The Theory of the Firm, Financial Flows, and Economic Performance

By William Lazonick ♦ Since the late 1980s, the dominant ideology of corporate governance in the United States has been that, for the sake of superior economic performance, companies should “maximize shareholder value” (MSV). As promulgated by agency theorists, however, MSV is an ideology of value extraction that lacks a theory of value creation. As a theory of value creation, I have constructed “The Theory of Innovative Enterprise”—an analytical framework for understanding how a business enterprise can generate a good or service that is of higher quality and lower cost than products previously available. In this essay, I use innovation theory to provide both a general theoretical critique and a selective empirical critique of agency theory.

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