IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/ags/feemim/92788.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

A Theory of Firm Decline

Author

Listed:
  • Gian Luca, Clementi
  • Cooley, Thomas
  • Di Giannatale, Sonia

Abstract

We study the problem of an investor that buys an equity stake in an entrepreneurial venture, under the assumption that the former cannot monitor the latter’s operations. The dynamics implied by the optimal incentive scheme is rich and quite different from that induced by other models of repeated moral hazard. In particular, our framework generates a rationale for firm decline. As young firms accumulate capital, the claims of both investor (outside equity) and entrepreneur (inside equity) increase. At some juncture, however, even as the latter keeps on growing, invested capital and firm value start declining and so does the value of outside equity. The reason is that incentive provision is costlier the wealthier the entrepreneur (the greater is inside equity). In turn, this leads to a decline in the constrained–efficient level of effort and therefore to a drop in the return to investment.

Suggested Citation

  • Gian Luca, Clementi & Cooley, Thomas & Di Giannatale, Sonia, 2010. "A Theory of Firm Decline," Institutions and Markets Papers 92788, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei (FEEM).
  • Handle: RePEc:ags:feemim:92788
    DOI: 10.22004/ag.econ.92788
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: https://ageconsearch.umn.edu/record/92788/files/NDL2010-088.pdf
    Download Restriction: no

    File URL: https://libkey.io/10.22004/ag.econ.92788?utm_source=ideas
    LibKey link: if access is restricted and if your library uses this service, LibKey will redirect you to where you can use your library subscription to access this item
    ---><---

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Clementi, Gian Luca & Cooley, Thomas F. & Wang, Cheng, 2006. "Stock grants as a commitment device," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 30(11), pages 2191-2216, November.
    2. Rui Albuquerque & Hugo A. Hopenhayn, 2004. "Optimal Lending Contracts and Firm Dynamics," The Review of Economic Studies, Review of Economic Studies Ltd, vol. 71(2), pages 285-315.
    3. Thomas Cooley & Ramon Marimon & Vincenzo Quadrini, 2004. "Aggregate Consequences of Limited Contract Enforceability," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 112(4), pages 817-847, August.
    4. Stephen E. Spear & Sanjay Srivastava, 1987. "On Repeated Moral Hazard with Discounting," The Review of Economic Studies, Review of Economic Studies Ltd, vol. 54(4), pages 599-617.
    5. Peter M. Demarzo & Michael J. Fishman & Zhiguo He & Neng Wang, 2012. "Dynamic Agency and the q Theory of Investment," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 67(6), pages 2295-2340, December.
    6. Espino, Emilio, 2005. "On Ramsey's conjecture: efficient allocations in the neoclassical growth model with private information," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 121(2), pages 192-213, April.
    7. Rogerson, William P, 1985. "The First-Order Approach to Principal-Agent Problems," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 53(6), pages 1357-1367, November.
    8. Bahk, Byong-Hong & Gort, Michael, 1993. "Decomposing Learning by Doing in New Plants," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 101(4), pages 561-583, August.
    9. Spear, Stephen E. & Wang, Cheng, 2005. "When to fire a CEO: optimal termination in dynamic contracts," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 120(2), pages 239-256, February.
    10. Agarwal, Rajshree & Gort, Michael, 1996. "The Evolution of Markets and Entry, Exit and Survival of Firms," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 78(3), pages 489-498, August.
    11. Wang, Cheng, 1997. "Incentives, CEO Compensation, and Shareholder Wealth in a Dynamic Agency Model," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 76(1), pages 72-105, September.
    12. Newman, Andrew F., 2007. "Risk-bearing and entrepreneurship," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 137(1), pages 11-26, November.
    13. Khan, Aubhik & Ravikumar, B., 2001. "Growth and risk-sharing with private information," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 47(3), pages 499-521, June.
    14. Sandro Brusco & Eva Ropero, 2007. "Financing Constraints and Firm Dynamics with Durable Capital," Department of Economics Working Papers 07-08, Stony Brook University, Department of Economics.
    15. HOLMSTROM, Bengt, 1979. "Moral hazard and observability," LIDAM Reprints CORE 379, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
    16. Marcet, Albert & Marimon, Ramon, 1992. "Communication, commitment, and growth," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 58(2), pages 219-249, December.
    17. Atkeson Andrew & Lucas Jr. , Robert E., 1995. "Efficiency and Equality in a Simple Model of Efficient Unemployment Insurance," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 66(1), pages 64-88, June.
    18. Fernandes, Ana & Phelan, Christopher, 2000. "A Recursive Formulation for Repeated Agency with History Dependence," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 91(2), pages 223-247, April.
    19. Abreu, Dilip & Pearce, David & Stacchetti, Ennio, 1990. "Toward a Theory of Discounted Repeated Games with Imperfect Monitoring," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 58(5), pages 1041-1063, September.
    20. Robert E. Lucas Jr., 1978. "On the Size Distribution of Business Firms," Bell Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 9(2), pages 508-523, Autumn.
    21. Syngjoo Choi & Raymond Fisman & Douglas Gale & Shachar Kariv, 2007. "Consistency and Heterogeneity of Individual Behavior under Uncertainty," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 97(5), pages 1921-1938, December.
    22. Gian Luca Clementi & Hugo A. Hopenhayn, 2006. "A Theory of Financing Constraints and Firm Dynamics," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, President and Fellows of Harvard College, vol. 121(1), pages 229-265.
    23. Bohacek Radim, 2005. "Capital Accumulation in Private Information Economies," The B.E. Journal of Macroeconomics, De Gruyter, vol. 5(1), pages 1-24, December.
    24. Charles A. Holt & Susan K. Laury, 2002. "Risk Aversion and Incentive Effects," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 92(5), pages 1644-1655, December.
    25. Jovanovic, Boyan, 1982. "Selection and the Evolution of Industry," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 50(3), pages 649-670, May.
    26. Bengt Holmstrom, 1979. "Moral Hazard and Observability," Bell Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 10(1), pages 74-91, Spring.
    27. Hopenhayn, Hugo A, 1992. "Entry, Exit, and Firm Dynamics in Long Run Equilibrium," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 60(5), pages 1127-1150, September.
    28. George P. Baker & Brian J. Hall, 2004. "CEO Incentives and Firm Size," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 22(4), pages 767-798, October.
    29. Richard E. Caves, 1998. "Industrial Organization and New Findings on the Turnover and Mobility of Firms," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 36(4), pages 1947-1982, December.
    30. Rampini, Adriano A., 2004. "Entrepreneurial activity, risk, and the business cycle," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 51(3), pages 555-573, April.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. Clementi, Gian Luca & Cooley, Thomas F. & Wang, Cheng, 2006. "Stock grants as a commitment device," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 30(11), pages 2191-2216, November.
    2. Chang-Koo Chi & Kyoung Jin Choi, 2017. "The impact of firm size on dynamic incentives and investment," RAND Journal of Economics, RAND Corporation, vol. 48(1), pages 147-177, March.
    3. Wang, Cheng, 1997. "Incentives, CEO Compensation, and Shareholder Wealth in a Dynamic Agency Model," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 76(1), pages 72-105, September.
    4. Jesse Perla & Carolin Pflueger & Michal Szkup, 2020. "Doubling Down on Debt: Limited Liability as a Financial Friction," NBER Working Papers 27747, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    5. Spear, Stephen E. & Wang, Cheng, 2005. "When to fire a CEO: optimal termination in dynamic contracts," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 120(2), pages 239-256, February.
    6. Loderer, Claudio & Waelchli, Urs, 2010. "Firm age and performance," MPRA Paper 26450, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    7. Mele, Antonio, 2014. "Repeated moral hazard and recursive Lagrangeans," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 42(C), pages 69-85.
    8. Sonia Di Giannatale Menegalli & Itza T. Q. Curiel-Cabral, 2013. "Compromises and Incentives," Working papers DTE 559, CIDE, División de Economía.
    9. Chong Lai & Rui Li & Yonghong Wu, 2020. "Optimal compensation and investment affected by firm size and time-varying external factors," Annals of Finance, Springer, vol. 16(3), pages 407-422, September.
    10. Emilio Espino & Julian Kozlowski & Juan M. Sanchez, 2013. "Too big to cheat: Efficiency and Investment in Partnerships," Working Papers 2013-001, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis.
    11. Josepa Miquel-Florensa, 2013. "Dynamic contractual incentives in the face of a Samaritans’s dilemma," Theory and Decision, Springer, vol. 74(1), pages 151-166, January.
    12. Espino, Emilio & Kozlowski, Julian & Sánchez, Juan M., 2018. "Investment and bilateral insurance," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 176(C), pages 311-341.
    13. Hengjie Ai & Rui Li, 2012. "Moral hazard, investment, and firm dynamics," FRB Atlanta CQER Working Paper 2012-01, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta.
    14. Maideu-Morera, Gerard, 2024. "Firm Size and Compensation Dynamics with Risk Aversion and Persistent Private Information," TSE Working Papers 24-1535, Toulouse School of Economics (TSE).
    15. Emilio Espino, 2012. "Investment and Insurance in an Economic Union," 2012 Meeting Papers 1176, Society for Economic Dynamics.
    16. Tsyrennikov, Viktor, 2013. "Capital flows under moral hazard," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 60(1), pages 92-108.

    Most related items

    These are the items that most often cite the same works as this one and are cited by the same works as this one.
    1. Golosov, M. & Tsyvinski, A. & Werquin, N., 2016. "Recursive Contracts and Endogenously Incomplete Markets," Handbook of Macroeconomics, in: J. B. Taylor & Harald Uhlig (ed.), Handbook of Macroeconomics, edition 1, volume 2, chapter 0, pages 725-841, Elsevier.
    2. Vincenzo Quadrini & Ramon Marimon & Thomas Cooley, 2012. "Risky Investments with Limited Commitment," 2012 Meeting Papers 603, Society for Economic Dynamics.
    3. Roman Fossati, 2011. "Outsourcing versus Vertical Integration: A Dynamic Model of Industry Equilibrium," 2011 Meeting Papers 1421, Society for Economic Dynamics.
    4. Alexander Karaivanov & Robert M. Townsend, 2014. "Dynamic Financial Constraints: Distinguishing Mechanism Design From Exogenously Incomplete Regimes," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 82(3), pages 887-959, May.
    5. Hengjie Ai & Rui Li, 2012. "Moral hazard, investment, and firm dynamics," FRB Atlanta CQER Working Paper 2012-01, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta.
    6. Tom Cooley & Sonia Di Giannatale & Gian Luca Clementi, 2008. "Total Executive Compensation," 2008 Meeting Papers 906, Society for Economic Dynamics.
    7. Hugo Hopenhayn & Arantxa Jarque, 2006. "Moral Hazard and Persistence," 2006 Meeting Papers 670, Society for Economic Dynamics.
    8. Francisco Queiró, 2022. "Entrepreneurial Human Capital and Firm Dynamics [How Large Are Human-Capital Externalities? Evidence from Compulsory Schooling Laws]," The Review of Economic Studies, Review of Economic Studies Ltd, vol. 89(4), pages 2061-2100.
    9. Espino, Emilio, 2005. "On Ramsey's conjecture: efficient allocations in the neoclassical growth model with private information," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 121(2), pages 192-213, April.
    10. Wang, Cheng, 2011. "Termination of dynamic contracts in an equilibrium labor market model," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 146(1), pages 74-110, January.
    11. Yang, Qing Gong & Temple, Paul, 2012. "Reform and competitive selection in China: An analysis of firm exits," Structural Change and Economic Dynamics, Elsevier, vol. 23(3), pages 286-299.
    12. Espino, Emilio & Kozlowski, Julian & Sánchez, Juan M., 2018. "Investment and bilateral insurance," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 176(C), pages 311-341.
    13. Quintin, Erwan, 2008. "Limited enforcement and the organization of production," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 30(3), pages 1222-1245, September.
    14. Alex Coad, 2007. "Firm Growth: a Survey," Post-Print halshs-00155762, HAL.
    15. Galina Vereshchagina & Hugo A. Hopenhayn, 2009. "Risk Taking by Entrepreneurs," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 99(5), pages 1808-1830, December.
    16. Mele, Antonio, 2014. "Repeated moral hazard and recursive Lagrangeans," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 42(C), pages 69-85.
    17. Zhao, Rui R., 2007. "Dynamic risk-sharing with two-sided moral hazard," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 136(1), pages 601-640, September.
    18. Till Gross & Stephane Verani, 2012. "Financing Constraints, Firm Dynamics, and International Trade," 2012 Meeting Papers 1035, Society for Economic Dynamics.
    19. Francisco J. Buera & Joseph P. Kaboski & Yongseok Shin, 2015. "Entrepreneurship and Financial Frictions: A Macrodevelopment Perspective," Annual Review of Economics, Annual Reviews, vol. 7(1), pages 409-436, August.
    20. Hvide, Hans K. & Panos, Georgios A., 2014. "Risk tolerance and entrepreneurship," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 111(1), pages 200-223.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Financial Economics;

    JEL classification:

    • D21 - Microeconomics - - Production and Organizations - - - Firm Behavior: Theory
    • H54 - Public Economics - - National Government Expenditures and Related Policies - - - Infrastructures

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:ags:feemim:92788. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a bibliographic reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: AgEcon Search (email available below). General contact details of provider: https://edirc.repec.org/data/feemmit.html .

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service. RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.