SUMMARYAnchoring Effect of the Prosecutor’s Demand on Sentence: Evidence from Korean Sexual Crime Cases / Jungwook Kim and Subok Chae
The anchoring effect can be found when a decision shows cognitive prejudice towards the initial information given. Several studies have argued that such an effect is present even for judges in the courtroom. This paper seeks to find a relationship between judges’ decisions on penalty sentences and the sentences recommended by prosecutors. In this study, 2,773 actual court cases are considered in the analysis, and quantile regression is used to show that the sentencing decisions judges make are anchored by the recommendations of prosecutors. However, this reliance on recommendations differs according to the seriousness of the crime committed. Specifically, at the lowest penalty levels, a one-month increase in the prosecutors’ sentencing recommendation results in a 0.25-month increase in the judges’ sentence, while at the highest sentence level, the judges’ sentences increase by 0.78 months under an identical condition. The results of this research indicate the need to create more objective and clear sentencing guidelines in the future in an effort to mitigate the psychological pressure experienced by judges with regard to serious offences or heinous crimes.
China’s Consumer Market: Growth, Changes, and Korea’s Opportunities / Jinkook LEE
This paper examines the aspects of changes in China’s consumer market since the mid-1980s. By comparing urban and rural residents’ expenditures, I find that the rural consumer market has exhibited extraordinary growth. Over the past decade, the consumption growth rate and average propensity to consume by rural residents have surpassed those of their urban counterparts, with the former’s consumption patterns becoming increasingly similar to the latter’s. Such a phenomenon prevails in rural areas which neighbor secondand third-tier cities where urbanization is progressing rapidly. These findings imply that Korean companies need to diversify their export goods in line with China’s expanding rural markets while further differentiating their product composition to satisfy the heterogeneous demands in urban areas. With regard to the government, efforts must be made to strengthen the export cooperative system so that it targets not only urban but also rural markets in China.
Korean Housing Cycle: Implications for Risk Management (Factor-augmented VAR Approach) / Hyuck-shin Kwon, Doo Won Bang and Myeong Hyeon Kim
This paper proposes an integrated risk-management framework that includes 1) measuring the risk of credit portfolios, 2) implementing a (macro) stress test, and 3) setting risk limits using the estimated systematic latent factor specific to capture the housing market cycle. To this end, we extract information from a set of real-estate market variables based on the FAVAR methodology proposed by Bernanke, Boivin and Eliasz (2005). Then, we show the method by which the estimated systematic factor is applied to risk management in the housing market in an integrated manner within the Vasicek one-factor credit model. The proposed methodology is well fitted to analyze the risk of slow-moving and low-defaultable forms of capital, such as alternative investments.
Treasury Stock Sales and Management Rights Protection: Conflicts of Interest between an Owner-manager and Small Shareholders / Sung Ick Cho
This paper investigates the sales process of treasury stocks, while most previous research studies treasury stock repurchases. The sales of treasury stocks are an important measure to protect management rights only in Korea, as Korea’s laws and systems allow treasury stock sales according to the board’s resolution and not by the decisions made at the general shareholders’ meetings. The board’s resolution, which considers the owner-manager’s interest on management rights, can cause damages to small shareholders. Considering (i) the economic characteristics of treasury stocks, (ii) other countries’ institutions and experiences, (iii) a theoretical assessment of the possibility of small shareholder losses, and (iv) lessons from Korea’s actual instances, Korea’s present system should be corrected at least in the mid and long term. Even in the short-term, rules pertaining to sales enacted by the board’s resolution inducing small shareholder losses should be overhauled. The autonomous discipline by various stakeholders could be an ideal measure by which to monitor ownermanager’s decisions. In addition, temporary intervention measures, such as government examinations, could be implemented to protect small shareholders.