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Banks as Secret Keepers

Author

Listed:
  • Tri Vi Dang
  • Gary Gorton
  • Bengt Holmström
  • Guillermo Ordoñez

Abstract

Banks produce short-term debt for transactions and storing value. The value of this debt must not vary over time so agents can easily trade it at par like money. To produce money-like safe liquidity, banks keep detailed information about their loans secret, reducing liquidity if needed to prevent agents from producing costly private information about the banks' loans. Capital markets involve information revelation, so they produce risky liquidity. The trade-off between less safe liquidity and more risky liquidity determines which firms choose to fund projects through banks and which ones through capital markets.

Suggested Citation

  • Tri Vi Dang & Gary Gorton & Bengt Holmström & Guillermo Ordoñez, 2017. "Banks as Secret Keepers," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 107(4), pages 1005-1029, April.
  • Handle: RePEc:aea:aecrev:v:107:y:2017:i:4:p:1005-29
    Note: DOI: 10.1257/aer.20140782
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • D92 - Microeconomics - - Micro-Based Behavioral Economics - - - Intertemporal Firm Choice, Investment, Capacity, and Financing
    • E51 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit - - - Money Supply; Credit; Money Multipliers
    • G21 - Financial Economics - - Financial Institutions and Services - - - Banks; Other Depository Institutions; Micro Finance Institutions; Mortgages
    • G31 - Financial Economics - - Corporate Finance and Governance - - - Capital Budgeting; Fixed Investment and Inventory Studies
    • G32 - Financial Economics - - Corporate Finance and Governance - - - Financing Policy; Financial Risk and Risk Management; Capital and Ownership Structure; Value of Firms; Goodwill

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