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A Theory of Financing Constraints and Firm Dynamics

  • Gina Luca Clementi
  • Hugo A Hopenhayn

There is widespread evidence supporting the conjecture that borrowing constraints have important implications for firm growth and survival. In this paper we model a multiperiod borrowing/lending relationship with asymmetric information. We show that borrowing constraints emerge as a feature of the optimal long-term lending contract, and that such constraints relax as the value of the borrower's claim to future cash flows increases. We also show that the optimal contract has interesting implications for firm dynamics. In agreement with the empirical evidence, as age and size increase, mean and variance of growth decrease, and firm survival increases. Copyright (c) President and Fellows of Harvard College and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology..

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File URL: http://www.mitpressjournals.org/doi/pdfplus/10.1162/qjec.2006.121.1.229
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Article provided by MIT Press in its journal The Quarterly Journal of Economics.

Volume (Year): 121 (2006)
Issue (Month): 1 (02)
Pages: 229-265

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Handle: RePEc:tpr:qjecon:v:121:y:2006:i:1:p:229-265
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  1. Troske, Kenneth R, 1996. "The Dynamic Adjustment Process of Firm Entry and Exit in Manufacturing and Finance, Insurance, and Real Estate," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 39(2), pages 705-35, October.
  2. Andrew Atkeson, 2010. "International lending with moral hazard and risk of repudiation," Levine's Working Paper Archive 200, David K. Levine.
  3. Gertler, Mark, 1992. "Financial Capacity and Output Fluctuations in an Economy with Multi-period Financial Relationships," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 59(3), pages 455-72, July.
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  6. Spear, Stephen E & Srivastava, Sanjay, 1987. "On Repeated Moral Hazard with Discounting," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 54(4), pages 599-617, October.
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  8. Timothy Dunne & Mark J. Roberts & Larry Samuelson, 1988. "Patterns of Firm Entry and Exit in U.S. Manufacturing Industries," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 19(4), pages 495-515, Winter.
  9. Bronwyn H. Hall, 1986. "The Relationship Between Firm Size and Firm Growth in the U.S. Manufacturing Sector," NBER Working Papers 1965, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  15. Steven M. Fazzari & R. Glenn Hubbard & BRUCE C. PETERSEN, 1988. "Financing Constraints and Corporate Investment," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 19(1), pages 141-206.
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  18. Atkeson, Andrew & Lucas, Robert E, Jr, 1992. "On Efficient Distribution with Private Information," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 59(3), pages 427-53, July.
  19. Dunne, Timothy & Roberts, Mark J & Samuelson, Larry, 1989. "The Growth and Failure of U.S. Manufacturing Plants," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 104(4), pages 671-98, November.
  20. Bolton, Patrick & Scharfstein, David S, 1990. "A Theory of Predation Based on Agency Problems in Financial Contracting," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 80(1), pages 93-106, March.
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