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The Cyclical Behavior of Debt and Equity Finance

Author

Listed:
  • Francisco Covas
  • Wouter J. Den Haan

Abstract

Debt and equity issuance are procyclical for most size-sorted firm categories of listed US firms and the procyclicality of equity issuance decreases monotonically with firm size. At the aggregate level, however, the results for equity issuance are not conclusive due to different behavior of the largest firms, especially those in the top one percent. During a deterioration in economic conditions, firms limit the impact of the reduction in external financing on investment by shedding financial assets. This is true for a worsening in aggregate as well as firm-specific conditions. (JEL E32, G32, L11, L25)

Suggested Citation

  • Francisco Covas & Wouter J. Den Haan, 2011. "The Cyclical Behavior of Debt and Equity Finance," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 101(2), pages 877-899, April.
  • Handle: RePEc:aea:aecrev:v:101:y:2011:i:2:p:877-99
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Gilchrist, Simon & Himmelberg, Charles P., 1995. "Evidence on the role of cash flow for investment," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 36(3), pages 541-572, December.
    2. Eugene F. Fama & Kenneth R. French, 2001. "Disappearing Dividends: Changing Firm Characteristics Or Lower Propensity To Pay?," Journal of Applied Corporate Finance, Morgan Stanley, vol. 14(1), pages 67-79.
    3. Francisco Covas & Wouter J. Den Haan, 2012. "The Role of Debt and Equity Finance Over the Business Cycle," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 122(565), pages 1262-1286, December.
    4. Ben S. Bernanke & Mark Gertler, 1995. "Inside the Black Box: The Credit Channel of Monetary Policy Transmission," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 9(4), pages 27-48, Fall.
    5. Choe, Hyuk & Masulis, Ronald W. & Nanda, Vikram, 1993. "Common stock offerings across the business cycle : Theory and evidence," Journal of Empirical Finance, Elsevier, vol. 1(1), pages 3-31, June.
    6. Fama, Eugene F. & French, Kenneth R., 2005. "Financing decisions: who issues stock?," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 76(3), pages 549-582, June.
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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • E32 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - Business Fluctuations; Cycles
    • G32 - Financial Economics - - Corporate Finance and Governance - - - Financing Policy; Financial Risk and Risk Management; Capital and Ownership Structure; Value of Firms; Goodwill
    • L11 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Production, Pricing, and Market Structure; Size Distribution of Firms
    • L25 - Industrial Organization - - Firm Objectives, Organization, and Behavior - - - Firm Performance

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    1. The Cyclical Behaviour of Debt and Equity Finance (AER 2011) in ReplicationWiki

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