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How Do Firms Choose Their Lenders? An Empirical Investigation

  • Cantillo, Miguel
  • Wright, Julian

This article investigates which companies finance themselves through intermediaries and which borrow directly from arm's length investors. Our empirical results show that large companies with abundant cash and collateral tap credit markets directly; these markets cater to safe and profitable industries, and are most active when riskless rates or intermediary earnings are low. We show that determinants of lender selection sharpen during investment downturns and that there are substantial asymmetries in the way firms enter and exit capital markets. These results support a theoretical framework where intermediaries have better reorganizational skills but a higher opportunity cost of capital than bondholders. Article published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Financial Studies in its journal, The Review of Financial Studies.

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Article provided by Society for Financial Studies in its journal Review of Financial Studies.

Volume (Year): 13 (2000)
Issue (Month): 1 ()
Pages: 155-89

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Handle: RePEc:oup:rfinst:v:13:y:2000:i:1:p:155-89
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Order Information: Web: http://www4.oup.co.uk/revfin/subinfo/

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  1. Holmström, Bengt & Tirole, Jean, 1994. "Financial Intermediation, Loanable Funds and the Real Sector," IDEI Working Papers 40, Institut d'Économie Industrielle (IDEI), Toulouse.
  2. Kashyap, Anil K & Stein, Jeremy C & Wilcox, David W, 1993. "Monetary Policy and Credit Conditions: Evidence from the Composition of External Finance," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 83(1), pages 78-98, March.
  3. Jeffrey K. MacKie-Mason, 1989. "Do Firms Care Who Provides their Financing?," NBER Working Papers 3039, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Charles W. Calomiris & Charles P. Himmelberg & Paul Wachtel, 1994. "Commercial Paper, Corporate Finance, and the Business Cycle: A Microeconomic Perspective," NBER Working Papers 4848, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Jensen, Michael C. & Meckling, William H., 1976. "Theory of the firm: Managerial behavior, agency costs and ownership structure," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 3(4), pages 305-360, October.
  6. Franks, Julian R. & Torous, Walter N., 1994. "A comparison of financial recontracting in distressed exchanges and chapter 11 reorganizations," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 35(3), pages 349-370, June.
  7. Besanko, David & Kanatas, George, 1993. "Credit Market Equilibrium with Bank Monitoring and Moral Hazard," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 6(1), pages 213-32.
  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.
  9. Petersen, Mitchell A & Rajan, Raghuram G, 1994. " The Benefits of Lending Relationships: Evidence from Small Business Data," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 49(1), pages 3-37, March.
  10. Rajan, Raghuram G, 1992. " Insiders and Outsiders: The Choice between Informed and Arm's-Length Debt," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 47(4), pages 1367-400, September.
  11. Warner, Jerold B, 1977. "Bankruptcy Costs: Some Evidence," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 32(2), pages 337-47, May.
  12. Diamond, Douglas W, 1991. "Monitoring and Reputation: The Choice between Bank Loans and Directly Placed Debt," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 99(4), pages 689-721, August.
  13. Bolton, Patrick & Scharfstein, David S, 1996. "Optimal Debt Structure and the Number of Creditors," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 104(1), pages 1-25, February.
  14. Gale, Douglas & Hellwig, Martin, 1985. "Incentive-Compatible Debt Contracts: The One-Period Problem," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 52(4), pages 647-63, October.
  15. Drew Fudenberg & Jean Tirole, 1991. "Game Theory," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262061414, June.
  16. Oliner, Stephen D & Rudebusch, Glenn D, 1996. "Monetary Policy and Credit Conditions: Evidence from the Composition of External Finance: Comment," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(1), pages 300-309, March.
  17. Gilson, Stuart C. & John, Kose & Lang, Larry H. P., 1990. "Troubled debt restructurings*1: An empirical study of private reorganization of firms in default," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 27(2), pages 315-353, October.
  18. Tashjian, Elizabeth & Lease, Ronald C. & McConnell, John J., 1996. "An empirical analysis of prepackaged bankruptcies," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 40(1), pages 135-162, January.
  19. Rothschild, Michael & Stiglitz, Joseph E., 1970. "Increasing risk: I. A definition," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 2(3), pages 225-243, September.
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