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Switching costs in local credit markets

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  • Barone, Guglielmo
  • Felici, Roberto
  • Pagnini, Marcello

Abstract

Switching costs are a key determinant of market performance. This paper tests their existence in the corporate loan market in which they are likely to play a central role because of the complexity of contracts and the relevance of informational problems. Using very detailed data at bank–firm level on four Italian local credit markets we empirically show that firms tend to iterate their choice of the main bank over time. This inertia is not related to unobserved and time invariant firms' preferences across banks and can be attributed to the existence of switching costs. Moreover these costs are higher for single-bank firms. We also offer evidence that banks price discriminate between new and old borrowers by charging lower interest rates to the former in order to cover part of the switching costs. The discount amounts to about 44 basis points and is equal to 7% of the average interest rate. These results prove robust to a number of other potential identification drawbacks.

Suggested Citation

  • Barone, Guglielmo & Felici, Roberto & Pagnini, Marcello, 2011. "Switching costs in local credit markets," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 29(6), pages 694-704.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:indorg:v:29:y:2011:i:6:p:694-704
    DOI: 10.1016/j.ijindorg.2011.03.004
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    Cited by:

    1. Ferri, Giovanni & Murro, Pierluigi, 2015. "Do firm–bank ‘odd couples’ exacerbate credit rationing?," Journal of Financial Intermediation, Elsevier, vol. 24(2), pages 231-251.
    2. Davide Arnaudo & Giacinto Micucci & Massimiliano Rigon & Paola Rossi, 2016. "Should I stay or should I go? Firms’ mobility across banks in the aftermath of financial turmoil," Temi di discussione (Economic working papers) 1086, Bank of Italy, Economic Research and International Relations Area.
    3. Diana Bonfim & Qinglei Dai, 2017. "Bank Size and Lending Specialisation," Economic Notes, Banca Monte dei Paschi di Siena SpA, vol. 46(2), pages 329-380, July.
    4. K. Sudhir & Nathan Yang, 2014. "Exploiting the Choice-Consumption Mismatch: A New Approach to Disentangle State Dependence and Heterogeneity," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 1941, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
    5. Guglielmo Barone & Guido de Blasio & Sauro Mocetti, 2016. "The real effects of credit crunch in the Great Recession: evidence from Italian provinces," Temi di discussione (Economic working papers) 1057, Bank of Italy, Economic Research and International Relations Area.
    6. Leonardo Gambacorta & Luigi Guiso & Paolo Mistrulli & Andrea Pozzi & Anton Tsoy, 2017. "The Cost of Distorted Financial Advice - Evidence from the Mortgage Market," EIEF Working Papers Series 1713, Einaudi Institute for Economics and Finance (EIEF), revised Oct 2017.
    7. Alessandro Gambini & Alberto Zazzaro, 2013. "Long-lasting bank relationships and growth of firms," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 40(4), pages 977-1007, May.
    8. Djordjevic, Ljubica, 2015. "Essays in household finance," Other publications TiSEM ad3edc86-915e-4ce8-ba38-b, Tilburg University, School of Economics and Management.
    9. Bellucci, Andrea & Borisov, Alexander & Zazzaro, Alberto, 2013. "Do banks price discriminate spatially? Evidence from small business lending in local credit markets," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 37(11), pages 4183-4197.
    10. Omar A. Abdelrahman, 2016. "Credit Card Rates and Consumer Switch: New Evidence," International Journal of Economics and Finance, Canadian Center of Science and Education, vol. 8(12), pages 95-105, December.
    11. Diana Bonfim & Gil Nogueira & Steven Ongena, 2016. "Sorry, We're Closed: Loan Conditions When Bank Branches Close and Firms Transfer to Another Bank," Working Papers w201607, Banco de Portugal, Economics and Research Department.
    12. D'Ignazio, Alessio & Menon, Carlo, 2012. "The causal effect of credit guarantees for SMEs: evidence from Italy," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 58555, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
    13. Ahn, Jung-Hyun & Breton, Régis, 2014. "Securitization, competition and monitoring," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 40(C), pages 195-210.
    14. Manuela Gallo & Valeria Vannoni, 2015. "Le determinanti dei tassi di interesse bancari nelle regioni italiane," SCIENZE REGIONALI, FrancoAngeli Editore, vol. 2015(1), pages 67-84.
    15. Claudio Ribeiro De Lucinda & Mariana Oliveira E Silv, 2014. "Switching Costs And The Extent Of Potential Competition In Brazilian Banking," Anais do XLI Encontro Nacional de Economia [Proceedings of the 41st Brazilian Economics Meeting] 139, ANPEC - Associação Nacional dos Centros de Pós-Graduação em Economia [Brazilian Association of Graduate Programs in Economics].
    16. Egarius, Damien & Weill, Laurent, 2016. "Switching costs and market power in the banking industry: The case of cooperative banks," Journal of International Financial Markets, Institutions and Money, Elsevier, vol. 42(C), pages 155-165.
    17. Zhao, Tianshu & Matthews, Kent & Murinde, Victor, 2013. "Cross-selling, switching costs and imperfect competition in British banks," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 37(12), pages 5452-5462.
    18. Juha-Pekka Niinimäki, 2015. "Asymmetric Information, Bank Lending and Implicit Contracts: Differences between Banks," Czech Economic Review, Charles University Prague, Faculty of Social Sciences, Institute of Economic Studies, vol. 9(2), pages 074-090, December.
    19. Anderson, Robert D.J. & Ashton, John K. & Hudson, Robert S., 2014. "The influence of product age on pricing decisions: An examination of bank deposit interest rate setting," Journal of International Financial Markets, Institutions and Money, Elsevier, vol. 31(C), pages 216-230.
    20. Marianna Brunetti & Rocco Ciciretti & Ljubica Djordjevic, 2016. "Till Mortgage Do Us Part: Refinancing Costs and Household’s Bank Switching," CEIS Research Paper 364, Tor Vergata University, CEIS, revised 13 Dec 2017.
    21. Pigini, Claudia & Presbitero, Andrea F. & Zazzaro, Alberto, 2016. "State dependence in access to credit," Journal of Financial Stability, Elsevier, vol. 27(C), pages 17-34.
    22. Juha-Pekka Niinimäki, 2014. "Relationship Lending, Bank Competition and Financial Stability," Czech Economic Review, Charles University Prague, Faculty of Social Sciences, Institute of Economic Studies, vol. 8(3), pages 102-124, December.
    23. Jiawei Chen & Michael Sacks, 2016. "Reimbursing Consumers' Switching Costs in Network Industries," Working Papers 16-13, NET Institute.
    24. Yin, Wei & Matthews, Kent, 2014. "The determinants and profitability of switching costs in Chinese banking," Cardiff Economics Working Papers E2014/13, Cardiff University, Cardiff Business School, Economics Section.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Switching costs; Local credit markets; Price discrimination; Lending relationships;

    JEL classification:

    • L13 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Oligopoly and Other Imperfect Markets
    • G21 - Financial Economics - - Financial Institutions and Services - - - Banks; Other Depository Institutions; Micro Finance Institutions; Mortgages

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