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Do financing constraints matter for R&D?

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  • Brown, James R.
  • Martinsson, Gustav
  • Petersen, Bruce C.

Abstract

Information problems and lack of collateral value should make R&D more susceptible to financing frictions than other investments, yet existing evidence on whether financing constraints limit R&D is decidedly mixed, particularly in the studies of non-U.S. firms. We study a large sample of European firms and also find little evidence of binding finance constraints when we estimate standard investment-cash flow regressions. However, we find strong evidence that the availability of finance matters for R&D once we directly control for: (i) firm efforts to smooth R&D with cash reserves and (ii) firm use of external equity finance. Our study provides a framework for evaluating financing constraints when firms rely extensively on external finance and endogenously manage buffer stocks of liquidity to keep investment smooth, and our findings show that controlling for this smoothing behavior is critical for uncovering the full effect of financing constraints. Our findings also indicate a major role for external equity in financing R&D, highlighting a causal channel through which stock market development and liberalization can promote economic growth by increasing firm-level innovative activity.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal European Economic Review.

Volume (Year): 56 (2012)
Issue (Month): 8 ()
Pages: 1512-1529

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Handle: RePEc:eee:eecrev:v:56:y:2012:i:8:p:1512-1529

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Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/eer

Related research

Keywords: Financing innovation; R&D financing constraints; Finance and growth; Stock market development; Value of liquidity;

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References

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Cited by:
  1. Mark Parsons, 2011. "Rewarding Innovation: Improving Federal Tax Support for Business R&D in Canada," C.D. Howe Institute Commentary, C.D. Howe Institute, issue 334, September.
  2. Chu, Angus C. & Cozzi, Guido, 2012. "R&D and economic growth in a cash-in-advance economy," MPRA Paper 39778, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  3. Chu, Angus C. & Cozzi, Guido & Lai, Ching-Chong & Liao, Chih-Hsing, 2013. "Monetary Policy, R&D and Economic Growth in an Open Economy," MPRA Paper 47364, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  4. Georgios Efthyvoulou & Priit Vahter, 2012. "Financial Constraints, Innovation Performance, and Sectoral Disaggregation," Working Papers 2012030, The University of Sheffield, Department of Economics.
  5. Sandra M. Leitner & Robert Stehrer, 2013. "R&D and Non-R&D Innovators in the Financial Crisis: the Role of Binding Credit Constraints," wiiw Working Papers 95, The Vienna Institute for International Economic Studies, wiiw.

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