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Customer Relationships and the Provision of Trade Credit during a Recession

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  • TSURUTA Daisuke
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    Abstract

    We investigate the effect of close customer relationships on small firms' provision of trade credit during the 2001-2003 recession in Japan. Many studies argue that close customer relationships are costly for suppliers because when their main customer has a high proportion of the firm's total sales, suppliers cannot easily find alternative customers. As a result, the supplier's bargaining position is weaker. Then suppliers that depend largely on their main customer cannot easily reduce their provision of trade credit, despite the need to do so during a recession. The results in our paper indicate that close customer relationships are not costly for suppliers in trade credit contracts. First, small businesses offer less trade credit, even if the proportion of sales to their main customers is high. Second, suppliers offer less trade credit if they are in financial distress and charged higher interest rates by banks, even when they are dependent on their main customers. Third, highly leveraged dependent suppliers reduce trade credit, unlike highly leveraged independent suppliers. This implies that dependent suppliers can cut back on trade credit in the presence of leverage. These findings imply that close customer relationships are beneficial for suppliers.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Paper provided by Research Institute of Economy, Trade and Industry (RIETI) in its series Discussion papers with number 09043.

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    Length: 33 pages
    Date of creation: Aug 2009
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    Handle: RePEc:eti:dpaper:09043

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    1. John McMillan & Christopher Woodruff, 1998. "Interfirm Relationships and Informal Credit in Vietnam," William Davidson Institute Working Papers Series 132, William Davidson Institute at the University of Michigan.
    2. Mariassunta Giannetti & Mike Burkart & Tore Ellingsen, 0. "What You Sell Is What You Lend? Explaining Trade Credit Contracts," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 24(4), pages 1261-1298.
    3. Mitchell A. Petersen & Raghuram G. Rajan, . "Trade Credit: Theories and Evidence," CRSP working papers 322, Center for Research in Security Prices, Graduate School of Business, University of Chicago.
    4. Uchida, Hirofumi & Udell, Gregory F. & Watanabe, Wako, 2013. "Are trade creditors relationship lenders?," Japan and the World Economy, Elsevier, vol. 25, pages 24-38.
    5. Van Horen, Neeltje, 2007. "Customer market power and the provision of trade credit : evidence from Eastern Europe and Central Asia," Policy Research Working Paper Series 4284, The World Bank.
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    7. Giuseppe Marotta, 2005. "When do trade credit discounts matter? Evidence from Italian firm-level data," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 37(4), pages 403-416.
    8. Barbara Summers & Nicholas Wilson, 2003. "Trade credit and customer relationships," Managerial and Decision Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 24(6-7), pages 439-455.
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    10. Nicholas Wilson & Barbara Summers, 2002. "Trade Credit Terms Offered by Small Firms: Survey Evidence and Empirical Analysis," Journal of Business Finance & Accounting, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 29(3&4), pages 317-351.
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    13. Love, Inessa & Preve, Lorenzo A. & Sarria-Allende, Virginia, 2005. "Trade credit and bank credit : evidence from recent financial crises," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3716, The World Bank.
    14. Ono, Masanori, 2001. "Determinants of Trade Credit in the Japanese Manufacturing Sector," Journal of the Japanese and International Economies, Elsevier, vol. 15(2), pages 160-177, June.
    15. Fabbri, Daniela & Klapper, Leora, 2008. "Market power and the matching of trade credit terms," Policy Research Working Paper Series 4754, The World Bank.
    16. TSURUTA Daisuke & Peng XU, 2007. "Debt Structure and Bankruptcy of Financially Distressed Small Businesses," Discussion papers 07032, Research Institute of Economy, Trade and Industry (RIETI).
    17. Tore Ellingsen & Mike Burkart, 2002. "In-Kind Finance," FMG Discussion Papers dp421, Financial Markets Group.
    18. Jeffrey H. Nilsen, 1999. "Trade Credit and the Bank Lending Channel," Working Papers 99.04, Swiss National Bank, Study Center Gerzensee.
    19. Petersen, Mitchell A & Rajan, Raghuram G, 1994. " The Benefits of Lending Relationships: Evidence from Small Business Data," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 49(1), pages 3-37, March.
    20. Benjamin S. Wilner, 2000. "The Exploitation of Relationships in Financial Distress: The Case of Trade Credit," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 55(1), pages 153-178, 02.
    21. Yoshiro Miwa & J. Mark Ramseyer, 2008. "The Implications of Trade Credit for Bank Monitoring: Suggestive Evidence from Japan," Journal of Economics & Management Strategy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 17(2), pages 317-343, 06.
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