DEA as a tool for bankruptcy assessment: A comparative study with logistic regression technique
This paper proposes data envelopment analysis (DEA) as a quick-and-easy tool for assessing corporate bankruptcy. DEA is a non-parametric method that measures weight estimates (not parameter estimates) of a classification function for separating default and non-default firms. Using a recent sample of large corporate failures in the United States, we examine the capability of DEA in assessing corporate bankruptcy by comparing it with logistic regression (LR). We find that DEA outperforms LR in evaluating bankruptcy out-of-sample. This feature of DEA is appealing and has practical relevance for investors. Another advantage of DEA over LR is that it does not have assumptions associated with statistical and econometric methods. Furthermore, DEA does not need a large sample size for bankruptcy evaluation, usually required by such statistical and econometric approaches. The need for such a large sample size is a significant disadvantage to practitioners when investment decisions are made using small samples. DEA can bypass such a difficulty related to a sample size. Thus, DEA is a practically appealing method for bankruptcy assessment.
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