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Credit Ratings Accuracy and Analyst Incentives

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  • Heski Bar-Isaac
  • Joel Shapiro

Abstract

The financial crisis has brought a new focus on the accuracy of credit rating agencies (CRAs). In this paper, we highlight the incentives of analysts at the CRAs to provide accurate ratings. We construct a model in which analysts initially work at a CRA and can then either remain or move to a bank. The CRA uses incentive contracts to motivate analysts, but does not capture the benefits if the analyst moves. We find that rating agency accuracy increases with CRA monitoring, bank profitability (a positive "revolving door" effect), and can be non-monotonic in the probability of an analyst leaving.

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File URL: http://www.aeaweb.org/articles.php?doi=10.1257/aer.101.3.120
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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by American Economic Association in its journal American Economic Review.

Volume (Year): 101 (2011)
Issue (Month): 3 (May)
Pages: 120-24

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Handle: RePEc:aea:aecrev:v:101:y:2011:i:3:p:120-24

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  1. Adam Ashcraft & Paul Goldsmith-Pinkham & James Vickery, 2010. "MBS ratings and the mortgage credit boom," Staff Reports 449, Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
  2. Bar-Isaac, Heski & Shapiro, Joel, 2013. "Ratings quality over the business cycle," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 108(1), pages 62-78.
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Cited by:
  1. Marco Pagano, 2012. "Finance: Economic Lifeblood or Toxin?," CSEF Working Papers 326, Centre for Studies in Economics and Finance (CSEF), University of Naples, Italy.
  2. Hau, Harald & Langfield, Sam & Marqués Ibañez, David, 2012. "Bank ratings: What determines their quality?," CEPR Discussion Papers 9171, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  3. Bar-Isaac, Heski & Shapiro, Joel, 2013. "Ratings quality over the business cycle," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 108(1), pages 62-78.
  4. Chen, Yongmin & Gu, Dingwei & Yao, Zhiyong, 2013. "Rating Inflation versus Deflation: On Procyclical Credit Ratings," MPRA Paper 51159, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  5. Andreas Freytag & Martin Zenker, 2012. "The Credit Rating Market - Options for Appropriate Regulation," Global Financial Markets Working Paper Series 2012-39, Friedrich-Schiller-University Jena.
  6. Doherty, Neil A. & Kartasheva, Anastasia V. & Phillips, Richard D., 2012. "Information effect of entry into credit ratings market: The case of insurers' ratings," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 106(2), pages 308-330.
  7. Englmaier, Florian & Muehlheusser, Gerd & Roider, Andreas, 2014. "Optimal incentive contracts for knowledge workers," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 67(C), pages 82-106.

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