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Small firms, borrowing constraints, and reputation

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  • Martinelli, Cesar

Abstract

This paper presents a simple model relating firm age with firm size and access to credit markets. Lending to new firms is risky because lenders have had no time to accumulate observations about them. As a result, interest rates are high and loans are small for entering firms. As firms need credit to operate, credit markets impose a limit on the scale of operation of new firms. Reputation building by the firms allows markets to overcome these difficulties over time. Large firms face lower interest rates than small firms, and credit markets fluctuations are shown to have different effects on firms of different size.
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  • Martinelli, Cesar, 1997. "Small firms, borrowing constraints, and reputation," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 33(1), pages 91-105, May.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:jeborg:v:33:y:1997:i:1:p:91-105
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    1. Mark Gertler & Simon Gilchrist, 1994. "Monetary Policy, Business Cycles, and the Behavior of Small Manufacturing Firms," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 109(2), pages 309-340.
    2. Cole, Harold L & Dow, James & English, William B, 1995. "Default, Settlement, and Signalling: Lending Resumption in a Reputational Model of Sovereign Debt," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 36(2), pages 365-385, May.
    3. Diamond, Douglas W, 1989. "Reputation Acquisition in Debt Markets," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 97(4), pages 828-862, August.
    4. Gertler, Mark & Gilchrist, Simon, 1993. " The Role of Credit Market Imperfections in the Monetary Transmission Mechanism: Arguments and Evidence," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 95(1), pages 43-64.
    5. Eaton, Jonathan, 1996. "Sovereign Debt, Reputation and Credit Terms," International Journal of Finance & Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 1(1), pages 25-35, January.
    6. Mitchell A. Petersen & Raghuram G. Rajan, 1995. "The Effect of Credit Market Competition on Lending Relationships," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 110(2), pages 407-443.
    7. Stiglitz, Joseph E & Weiss, Andrew, 1981. "Credit Rationing in Markets with Imperfect Information," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 71(3), pages 393-410, June.
    8. Townsend, Robert M., 1979. "Optimal contracts and competitive markets with costly state verification," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 21(2), pages 265-293, October.
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