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Capital ratios and bank lending: A matched bank approach

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  • Carlson, Mark
  • Shan, Hui
  • Warusawitharana, Missaka

Abstract

This paper examines the impact of bank capital ratios on bank lending by comparing differences in loan growth to differences in capital ratios at sets of banks that are matched based on geographic area as well as size and various business characteristics. We argue that such comparisons are most effective at controlling for local loan demand and other environmental factors. For comparison we also control for local factors using MSA fixed effects. We find, based on data from 2001 to 2011, that the relationship between capital ratios and bank lending was significant during and shortly following the recent financial crisis but not at other times. We find that the relationship between capital ratios and loan growth is stronger for banks where loans are contracting than where loans are expanding. We also show that the elasticity of bank lending with respect to capital ratios is higher when capital ratios are relatively low, suggesting that the effect of capital ratio on bank lending is nonlinear. In addition, we present findings on the relationship between bank capital and lending by bank size and loan type.

Suggested Citation

  • Carlson, Mark & Shan, Hui & Warusawitharana, Missaka, 2013. "Capital ratios and bank lending: A matched bank approach," Journal of Financial Intermediation, Elsevier, vol. 22(4), pages 663-687.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:jfinin:v:22:y:2013:i:4:p:663-687
    DOI: 10.1016/j.jfi.2013.06.003
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