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If you try, you’ll get by: Chinese private firms’ efficiency gains from overcoming financial constraints

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  • Galina Hale
  • Cheryl Long

Abstract

It appears to be common knowledge that external financing in China is mostly limited to state-owned firms and is hard to obtain for smaller private firms. In this paper we first confirm this pattern for more recent data and then investigate ways in which private firms overcome their financing constraints. We find that private firms reduce their need for external funds through more efficient management of inventory levels and accounts receivable. We further show that the low levels of inventories and accounts receivable in Chinese private firms are not below efficient levels and are unlikely to be a hindrance to their efficient operations. Instead, these low levels of working capital seem to be correlated with higher financial returns as well as higher productivity. We conclude that while limited access to external financing may limit the growth of private sector in the medium and long run, in the short run the lean operating budget may be contributing to Chinese private firms’ efficiency.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco in its series Working Paper Series with number 2010-21.

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Date of creation: 2010
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:fip:fedfwp:2010-21

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Keywords: Business enterprises ; China;

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References

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  1. Poncet, Sandra & Steingress, Walter & Vandenbussche, Hylke, 2009. "Financial Constraints in China: Firm-Level Evidence," CEPR Discussion Papers 7132, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  2. repec:hal:cesptp:hal-00633901 is not listed on IDEAS
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  5. Fisman, Raymond & Love, Inessa, 2001. "Trade credit, financial intermediary development, and industry growth," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2695, The World Bank.
  6. Wendy Dobson & Anil K. Kashyap, 2006. "The Contradiction in China's Gradualist Banking Reforms," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 37(2), pages 103-162.
  7. Cull, Robert & Xu, Lixin Colin, 2003. "Who gets credit? The behavior of bureaucrats and state banks in allocating credit to Chinese state-owned enterprises," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 71(2), pages 533-559, August.
  8. Chong-En Bai & Chang-Tai Hsieh & Yingyi Qian, 2006. "The Return to Capital in China," NBER Working Papers 12755, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Genevieve Boyreau-Debray & Shang-Jin Wei, 2005. "Pitfalls of a State-Dominated Financial System: The Case of China," NBER Working Papers 11214, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Galina Hale & Cheryl Long, 2010. "What are the Sources of Financing of the Chinese Firms?," Working Papers 192010, Hong Kong Institute for Monetary Research.
  11. Cull, Robert & Xu, Lixin Colin, 2000. "Bureaucrats, State Banks, and the Efficiency of Credit Allocation: The Experience of Chinese State-Owned Enterprises," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 28(1), pages 1-31, March.
  12. Ge, Ying & Qiu, Jiaping, 2007. "Financial development, bank discrimination and trade credit," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 31(2), pages 513-530, February.
  13. Galina Hale & Cheryl Long & Hirotaka Miura, 2010. "Where to Find Positive Productivity Spillovers from FDI in China: Disaggregated Analysis," Working Papers 142010, Hong Kong Institute for Monetary Research.
  14. Cull, Robert & Lixin Colin Xu & Tian Zhu, 2007. "Formal finance and trade credit during China's transition," Policy Research Working Paper Series 4204, The World Bank.
  15. Liu, Qiao & Siu, Alan, 2011. "Institutions and Corporate Investment: Evidence from Investment-Implied Return on Capital in China," Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis, Cambridge University Press, vol. 46(06), pages 1831-1863, December.
  16. Héricourt, Jérôme & Poncet, Sandra, 2009. "FDI and credit constraints: Firm-level evidence from China," Economic Systems, Elsevier, vol. 33(1), pages 1-21, March.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Didier, Tatiana & Schmukler, Sergio L., 2013. "The financing and growth of firms in China and India: Evidence from capital markets," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 39(C), pages 111-137.
  2. Gunther Schnabl, 2011. "The role of the chinese dollar peg for macroeconomic stability in China and the world economy," Global Financial Markets Working Paper Series 13-2010, Friedrich-Schiller-University Jena.
  3. Ling Feng & Zhiyuan Li & Deborah L. Swenson, 2012. "The Connection between Imported Intermediate Inputs and Exports: Evidence from Chinese Firms," NBER Working Papers 18260, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Ronald Ian McKinnon & Gunther Schnabl, 2011. "China and its Dollar Exchange Rate: A Worldwide Stabilizing Influence?," CESifo Working Paper Series 3449, CESifo Group Munich.
  5. Alessandra Guariglia & Simona Mateut, . "Political affiliation and trade credit extension by Chinese firms," Discussion Papers 11/12, University of Nottingham, GEP.
  6. Chadwick Curtis, 2013. "Economic Reforms and the Evolution of China's TFP," 2013 Meeting Papers 1023, Society for Economic Dynamics.

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