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Bank Financing and Investment Decisions with Asymmetric Information about Loan Quality

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  • Deborah J. Lucas
  • Robert L. McDonald

Abstract

Banks know more about the quality of their assets than do outside investors. This informational asymmetry can distort investment decisions if the bank must raise funds from uninformed outsiders. We model the effect of asymmetric information about loan quality on the asset and liability decisions of banks and the market valuation of bank liabilities. The existence of a precautionary demand for riskless securities against future liquidity needs depends on both the regulatory environment and the informational structure. If banks are ex ante identical, they prefer issuing risky debt to fund a withdrawal to holding riskless securities ex ante. If banks have partial knowledge of loan quality, however, high quality banks may hold riskless securities to signal their quality, enabling them to issue risky debt at a lower interest rate. We present new empirical evidence that banks with higher asset quality do in fact hold more cash and securities.

Suggested Citation

  • Deborah J. Lucas & Robert L. McDonald, 1992. "Bank Financing and Investment Decisions with Asymmetric Information about Loan Quality," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 23(1), pages 86-105, Spring.
  • Handle: RePEc:rje:randje:v:23:y:1992:i:spring:p:86-105
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    Cited by:

    1. Hassan Belkacem GHASSAN, 2017. "New alternative measuring financial stability," Turkish Economic Review, KSP Journals, vol. 4(3), pages 275-281, September.
    2. Imai, Masami & Takarabe, Seitaro, 2011. "Transmission of liquidity shock to bank credit: Evidence from the deposit insurance reform in Japan," Journal of the Japanese and International Economies, Elsevier, vol. 25(2), pages 143-156, June.
    3. Guillermo Alger & Ingela Alger, 1999. "Liquid Assets in Banks: Theory and Practice," Boston College Working Papers in Economics 446, Boston College Department of Economics.
    4. DeYoung, Robert E. & Hughes, Joseph P. & Moon, Choon-Geol, 2001. "Efficient risk-taking and regulatory covenant enforcement in a deregulated banking industry," Journal of Economics and Business, Elsevier, vol. 53(2-3), pages 255-282.
    5. Anil K. Kashyap & Jeremy C. Stein, 1994. "Monetary Policy and Bank Lending," NBER Chapters,in: Monetary Policy, pages 221-261 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    6. Hughes, Joseph P. & Mester, Loretta J. & Moon, Choon-Geol, 2001. "Are scale economies in banking elusive or illusive?: Evidence obtained by incorporating capital structure and risk-taking into models of bank production," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 25(12), pages 2169-2208, December.
    7. Kashyap, Anil K. & Stein, Jeremy C., 1995. "The impact of monetary policy on bank balance sheets," Carnegie-Rochester Conference Series on Public Policy, Elsevier, vol. 42(1), pages 151-195, June.
    8. Jones, John B, 2003. " The Dynamic Effects of Firm-Level Borrowing Constraints," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 35(5), pages 743-762, October.
    9. Joseph P. Hughes & Loretta J. Mester & Choon-Geol Moon, 2000. "Are Scale Economies in Banking Elusive or Illusive?," Departmental Working Papers 200004, Rutgers University, Department of Economics.
    10. Jeremy C. Stein, 1998. "An Adverse-Selection Model of Bank Asset and Liability Management with Implications for the Transmission of Monetary Policy," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 29(3), pages 466-486, Autumn.
    11. Joseph P. Hughes & William W. Lang & Choon-Geol Moon & Michael S. Pagano, 1998. "Measuring the efficiency of capital allocation in commercial banking," Working Papers 98-2, Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia.
    12. Dairo Estrada & Poldy Osorio, 2004. "Effects of Financial Capital on Colombian Banking Efficiency," Revista Ensayos sobre Política Económica, Banco de la Republica de Colombia, vol. 22(47), pages 162-201, Diciembre.
    13. Milne, Alistair & Robertson, Donald, 1996. "Firm behaviour under the threat of liquidation," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 20(8), pages 1427-1449, August.
    14. Chen, Ting-Hsuan & Chou, Hsiu-Hsia & Chang, Yuan & Fang, Hao, 2015. "The effect of excess lending on bank liquidity : Evidence from China," International Review of Economics & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 36(C), pages 54-68.
    15. Joseph P. Hughes & Loretta J. Mester & Choon-Geol Moon, 2000. "Are All Scale Economies in Banking Elusive or Illusive: Evidence Obtained by Incorporating Capital Structure and Risk Taking into Models of Bank Production," Center for Financial Institutions Working Papers 00-33, Wharton School Center for Financial Institutions, University of Pennsylvania.
    16. Christopher F Baum & Mustafa Caglayan & Neslihan Ozkan, 2004. "The second moments matter: The response of bank lending behavior to macroeconomic uncertainty," Computing in Economics and Finance 2004 172, Society for Computational Economics.
    17. Delli Gatti, Domenico & Gallegati, Mauro & Greenwald, Bruce & Russo, Alberto & Stiglitz, Joseph E., 2010. "The financial accelerator in an evolving credit network," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 34(9), pages 1627-1650, September.
    18. Andrew Winton, 1996. "Monitored finance, liquidity, and institutional investment choice," Working Paper 9616, Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland.
    19. Deep, Akash & Schaefer, Guido, 2004. "Are Banks Liquidity Transformers?," Working Paper Series rwp04-022, Harvard University, John F. Kennedy School of Government.

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