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Too many to fail? Inter-enterprise arrears in transition economies

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  • Antje Hildebrandt

    (Humboldt University)

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    Abstract

    In advanced market economies, the use of trade credits is an important way of short-term financing and generally considered as being part of normal business practice. Some transition economies, however, have experienced a rapid accumulation of trade credits which have led to interlocking webs of arrears and collective bailouts by the government. In this paper, firm-level data is used to test whether trade credits are just part of normal business practice comparable to more advanced market-economies or whether trade credits represent a systematic phenomena supporting soft budget constraints of firms in transition. The results suggest that trade credits are not just normal business practice but that they can have negative spill-over effects on other firms by worsening their financial situation. We conclude that the problem of interlocking effects is more pronounced in countries with less developed institutions, low financial intermediation and, overall, no credible commitment to market economic reforms.

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    File URL: http://128.118.178.162/eps/dev/papers/0212/0212001.pdf
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    Bibliographic Info

    Paper provided by EconWPA in its series Development and Comp Systems with number 0212001.

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    Length: 35 pages
    Date of creation: 13 Dec 2002
    Date of revision:
    Handle: RePEc:wpa:wuwpdc:0212001

    Note: Type of Document - pdf; prepared on IBM PC; pages: 35; figures: included
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    Web page: http://128.118.178.162

    Related research

    Keywords: inter-enterprise arrears; soft budget constraints; transition economies;

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    References

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    1. Stanley Fischer & Ratna Sahay, 2000. "The Transition Economies After Ten Years," IMF Working Papers 00/30, International Monetary Fund.
    2. Begg, David & Portes, Richard, 1992. "Enterprise Debt and Economic Transformation: Financial Restructuring of the State Sector in Central and Eastern Europe," CEPR Discussion Papers 695, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    3. Mitchell A. Petersen & Raghuram G. Rajan, 1996. "Trade Credit: Theories and Evidence," NBER Working Papers 5602, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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    5. Jaffee, Dwight & Stiglitz, Joseph, 1990. "Credit rationing," Handbook of Monetary Economics, in: B. M. Friedman & F. H. Hahn (ed.), Handbook of Monetary Economics, edition 1, volume 2, chapter 16, pages 837-888 Elsevier.
    6. Luoana D. Santarossa, 2001. "Arrears as a Sign of Financial Repression in Transition Economies - The Case of Romania," CERT Discussion Papers 0104, Centre for Economic Reform and Transformation, Heriot Watt University.
    7. Kim, Byung-Yeon & Pirttila, Jukka, 2004. "Money, barter, and inflation in Russia," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 32(2), pages 297-314, June.
    8. Perotti, E. C., 1998. "Inertial credit and opportunistic arrears in transition," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 42(9), pages 1703-1725, November.
    9. Carlin, Wendy & Mayer, Colin, 1992. "Restructuring Enterprises in Eastern Europe," CEPR Discussion Papers 700, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
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    12. Stanley Fischer & Ratna Sahay, 2000. "The Transition Economies After Ten Years," NBER Working Papers 7664, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    13. de Melo, Martha & Denizer, Cevdet & Gelb, Alan & Tenev, Stoyan, 1997. "Circumstance and choice : the role of initial conditions and policies in transition economies," Policy Research Working Paper Series 1866, The World Bank.
    14. Wendy Carlin & Steven Fries & Mark Schaffer & Paul Seabright, 2000. "Barter and non-monetary transactions in transition economies: Evidence from a cross-country survey," Working Papers 50, European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, Office of the Chief Economist.
    15. Demirguc-Kunt, Asli & Maksimovic, Vojislav, 2001. "Firms as financial intermediaries - evidence from trade credit data," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2696, The World Bank.
    16. Kornai, J, 1979. "Resource-Constrained versus Demand-Constrained Systems," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 47(4), pages 801-19, July.
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    18. Eric V. Clifton & Mohsin S. Khan, 1993. "Interenterprise Arrears in Transforming Economies: The Case of Romania," IMF Staff Papers, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 40(3), pages 680-696, September.
    19. Begg, David & Portes, Richard, 1993. "Enterprise debt and financial restructuring in Central and Eastern Europe," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 37(2-3), pages 396-407, April.
    20. Berglof, Erik & Roland, Gerard, 1998. "Soft Budget Constraints and Banking in Transition Economies," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 26(1), pages 18-40, March.
    21. Nilsen, Jeffrey H, 2002. "Trade Credit and the Bank Lending Channel," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 34(1), pages 226-53, February.
    22. Roman Frydman & Cheryl Gray & Marek Hessel & Andrzej Rapaczynski, 2000. "The Limits of Discipline: Ownership and Hard Budget Constraints in the Transition Economies," The Economics of Transition, The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, vol. 8(3), pages 577-601, November.
    23. Ickes, B.W. & Ryterman, R., 1993. "Roadblock to Economic Reform: Inter-Enterprise Debt and the Transition to Markets," Papers 2-93-1, Pennsylvania State - Department of Economics.
    24. Jain, Neelam, 2001. "Monitoring costs and trade credit," The Quarterly Review of Economics and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 41(1), pages 89-110.
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    Cited by:
    1. Akhmed Akhmedov & Ekaterina Zhuravskaya, 2004. "Opportunistic Political Cycles: Test in A Young Democracy Setting," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 119(4), pages 1301-1338, November.
    2. Koen Schoors & Konstantin Sonin, 2005. "Passive Creditors," William Davidson Institute Working Papers Series wp737, William Davidson Institute at the University of Michigan.

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