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The Impact of Financial Structure on Firms' Financial Constraints: A Cross-Country Analysis

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  • Christopher F. Baum
  • Dorothea Schäfer
  • Oleksandr Talavera

Abstract

We estimate firms' cash flow sensitivity of cash to empirically test how the financial system's structure and activity level influence their financial constraints. For this purpose we merge Almeida, Campello and Weisbach (2004), a pathbreaking new design for evaluating a firm's financial constraints, with Levine (2002), who paved the way for comparative analysis of financial systems around the world. We conjecture that a country's financial system, both in terms of its structure and its level of development, should influence the cash flow sensitivity of cash of constrained firms but leave unconstrained firms unaffected. We test our hypothesis with a large international sample of 80,000 firm-years from 1989 to 2006. Our findings reveal that both the structure of the financial system and its level of development matter. Bank-based financial systems provide constrained firms with easier access to external financing.

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File URL: http://www.diw.de/documents/publikationen/73/diw_01.c.95870.de/dp863.pdf
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research in its series Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin with number 863.

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Length: 28 p.
Date of creation: 2009
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:diw:diwwpp:dp863

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Keywords: financial constraints; financial system; cash flow sensitivity of cash;

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References

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  1. Acharya, Viral V. & Almeida, Heitor & Campello, Murillo, 2007. "Is cash negative debt? A hedging perspective on corporate financial policies," Journal of Financial Intermediation, Elsevier, vol. 16(4), pages 515-554, October.
  2. Chakraborty, Shankha & Ray, Tridip, 2006. "Bank-based versus market-based financial systems: A growth-theoretic analysis," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 53(2), pages 329-350, March.
  3. Steven Fazzari & R. Glenn Hubbard & Bruce C. Petersen, 1987. "Financing Constraints and Corporate Investment," NBER Working Papers 2387, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Demirguc-Kunt, Asli & Maksimovic, Vojislav, 2000. "Funding growth in bank-based and market-based financial systems : evidence from firm level data," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2432, The World Bank.
  5. Jason G. Cummins & Kevin A. Hassett & Stephen D. Oliner, 1999. "Investment behavior, observable expectations, and internal funds," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 1999-27, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
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  7. Beck, Thorsten & Demirguc-Kunt, Asli & Levine, Ross, 1999. "A new database on financial development and structure," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2146, The World Bank.
  8. Nathalie Moyen, 2004. "Investment-Cash Flow Sensitivities: Constrained versus Unconstrained Firms," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 59(5), pages 2061-2092, October.
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  13. Steven M. Fazzari & R. Glenn Hubbard & Bruce C. Petersen, 2000. "Investment-Cash Flow Sensitivities Are Useful: A Comment On Kaplan And Zingales," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 115(2), pages 695-705, May.
  14. Steven N. Kaplan & Luigi Zingales, 2000. "Investment-Cash Flow Sensitivities Are Not Valid Measures Of Financing Constraints," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 115(2), pages 707-712, May.
  15. Levine, Ross, 2002. "Bank-Based or Market-Based Financial Systems: Which Is Better?," Journal of Financial Intermediation, Elsevier, vol. 11(4), pages 398-428, October.
  16. Heitor Almeida & Murillo Campello & Michael S. Weisbach, 2004. "The Cash Flow Sensitivity of Cash," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 59(4), pages 1777-1804, 08.
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Cited by:
  1. Nguyen, James, 2012. "The relationship between net interest margin and noninterest income using a system estimation approach," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 36(9), pages 2429-2437.
  2. Martinsson, Gustav & Lööf, Hans, 2009. "Internal Finance and Patents - evidence from firm-level data," Working Paper Series in Economics and Institutions of Innovation 194, Royal Institute of Technology, CESIS - Centre of Excellence for Science and Innovation Studies.

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