Advanced Search
MyIDEAS: Login to save this paper or follow this series

Agency Costs, Collateral, and Business Fluctuations

Contents:

Author Info

  • Ben S. Bernanke
  • Mark Gertler

Abstract

Bad economic times are typically associated with a high incidence of financial distress, e.g., insolvency and bankruptcy. This paper studies the role of changes in borrower solvency in the initiation and propagation of the business cycle. We first develop a model of the process of financing real investment projects under asymmetric information, extending work by Robert Townsend. A major conclusion here is that when the entrepreneurs who borrow to finance projects are more solvent (have more "collateral"), the deadweight agency costs of investment finance are lower. This model of investment finance is then embedded in a dynamic macroeconomic setting. We show that, first, since reductions in collateral in bad times increase the agency costs of borrowing, which in turn depress the demand for investment, the presence of these financial factors will tend to amplify swings in real output. Second, we find that autonomous factors which affect the collateral of borrowers (as in a "debt-deflation") can actually initiate cycles in output.

Download Info

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
File URL: http://www.nber.org/papers/w2015.pdf
Download Restriction: no

Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 2015.

as in new window
Length:
Date of creation: Aug 1986
Date of revision:
Publication status: published as Bernanke, Ben and Mark Gertler, "Agency Costs, Net Worth, and Business Fluctuations," American Economic Review, vol. 79, no. 1, pp. 14-31, March 1989
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:2015

Note: EFG
Contact details of provider:
Postal: National Bureau of Economic Research, 1050 Massachusetts Avenue Cambridge, MA 02138, U.S.A.
Phone: 617-868-3900
Email:
Web page: http://www.nber.org
More information through EDIRC

Related research

Keywords:

Other versions of this item:

References

References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
as in new window
  1. Sappington, David, 1983. "Limited liability contracts between principal and agent," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 29(1), pages 1-21, February.
  2. Kydland, Finn E & Prescott, Edward C, 1982. "Time to Build and Aggregate Fluctuations," Econometrica, Econometric Society, Econometric Society, vol. 50(6), pages 1345-70, November.
  3. Hamilton, James D., 1987. "Monetary factors in the great depression," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 19(2), pages 145-169, March.
  4. Robert Townsend, 1979. "Optimal contracts and competitive markets with costly state verification," Staff Report, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis 45, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  5. King, Robert G & Plosser, Charles I, 1984. "Money, Credit, and Prices in a Real Business Cycle," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, American Economic Association, vol. 74(3), pages 363-80, June.
  6. Williamson, Stephen D, 1987. "Financial Intermediation, Business Failures, and Real Business Cycles," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, University of Chicago Press, vol. 95(6), pages 1196-1216, December.
  7. Bengt Holmstrom, 1979. "Moral Hazard and Observability," Bell Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, The RAND Corporation, vol. 10(1), pages 74-91, Spring.
  8. Greenwald, Bruce & Stiglitz, Joseph E & Weiss, Andrew, 1984. "Informational Imperfections in the Capital Market and Macroeconomic Fluctuations," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, American Economic Association, vol. 74(2), pages 194-99, May.
  9. Diamond, Douglas W, 1984. "Financial Intermediation and Delegated Monitoring," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 51(3), pages 393-414, July.
  10. Long, John B, Jr & Plosser, Charles I, 1983. "Real Business Cycles," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, University of Chicago Press, vol. 91(1), pages 39-69, February.
  11. Gale, Douglas & Hellwig, Martin, 1985. "Incentive-Compatible Debt Contracts: The One-Period Problem," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 52(4), pages 647-63, October.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

Citations

Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
as in new window

Cited by:
  1. Benjamin M. Friedman, 1988. "Targets and Instruments of Monetary Policy," NBER Working Papers 2668, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Martin C. Schmalz & David A. Sraer & David Thesmar, 2013. "Housing Collateral and Entrepreneurship," NBER Working Papers 19680, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Gertler, Mark, 1988. "Financial Structure and Aggregate Economic Activity: An Overview," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 20(3), pages 559-88, August.
  4. Robert Flood & Michael Mussa, 1994. "Issues Concerning Nominal Anchors for Monetary Policy," NBER Working Papers 4850, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Karen Mills & Steve Morling & Warren Tease, 1993. "Balance Sheet Restructuring and Investment," RBA Research Discussion Papers, Reserve Bank of Australia rdp9308, Reserve Bank of Australia.
  6. Sandra Eickmeier & Boris Hofmann & Andreas Worms, 2009. "Macroeconomic Fluctuations and Bank Lending: Evidence for Germany and the Euro Area," German Economic Review, Verein für Socialpolitik, Verein für Socialpolitik, vol. 10, pages 193-223, 05.
  7. Tuomas Peltonen & Ricardo Sousa & Isabel Vansteenkiste, 2012. "Investment in emerging market economies," Empirical Economics, Springer, Springer, vol. 43(1), pages 97-119, August.

Lists

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

Statistics

Access and download statistics

Corrections

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:2015. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: ().

If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.