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Finance Constraints and Inventory Investment: Empirical Tests with Panel Data


  • Rose Cunningham


The author empirically tests two aspects of the interaction between financial variables and inventory investment: negative cash flow and finance constraints due to asymmetric information. This is one of the first studies of inventory investment and finance constraints using Canadian data. A sample of Canadian manufacturing firms over the period 1992Q2-1999Q4 is split into subsamples based on age, bond rating, and size to reflect expected differences in degrees of asymmetric information problems. The findings are consistent with a model in which inventory investment is a U-shaped function of cash flow. Higher degrees of information asymmetry do not appear to generate differences in the sensitivity of inventory investment to cash flow during the sample period.

Suggested Citation

  • Rose Cunningham, 2004. "Finance Constraints and Inventory Investment: Empirical Tests with Panel Data," Staff Working Papers 04-38, Bank of Canada.
  • Handle: RePEc:bca:bocawp:04-38

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Mark Gertler & Simon Gilchrist, 1994. "Monetary Policy, Business Cycles, and the Behavior of Small Manufacturing Firms," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 109(2), pages 309-340.
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    3. Huntley Schaller, 1993. "Asymmetric Information, Liquidity Constraints and Canadian Investment," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 26(3), pages 552-574, August.
    4. Gilchrist, Simon & Himmelberg, Charles P., 1995. "Evidence on the role of cash flow for investment," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 36(3), pages 541-572, December.
    5. Manuel Arellano & Stephen Bond, 1991. "Some Tests of Specification for Panel Data: Monte Carlo Evidence and an Application to Employment Equations," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 58(2), pages 277-297.
    6. Anil K Kashyap & Owen A. Lamont & Jeremy C. Stein, 1994. "Credit Conditions and the Cyclical Behavior of Inventories," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 109(3), pages 565-592.
    7. Guariglia, Alessandra, 1999. "The Effects of Financial Constraints on Inventory Investment: Evidence from a Panel of UK Firms," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 66(261), pages 43-62, February.
    8. Takeo Hoshi & Anil Kashyap & David Scharfstein, 1991. "Corporate Structure, Liquidity, and Investment: Evidence from Japanese Industrial Groups," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 106(1), pages 33-60.
    9. Robert E. Carpenter & Steven M. Fazzari & Bruce C. Petersen, 1994. "Inventory (Dis)Investment, Internal Finance Fluctuations, and the Business Cycle," Macroeconomics 9401001, EconWPA.
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    11. Whited, Toni M, 1992. " Debt, Liquidity Constraints, and Corporate Investment: Evidence from Panel Data," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 47(4), pages 1425-1460, September.
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    13. 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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    16. Egon Zakrajsek, 1997. "Retail inventories, internal finance, and aggregate fluctuations," Research Paper 9722, Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
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    Cited by:

    1. Gianni La Cava, 2005. "Financial Constraints, the User Cost of Capital and Corporate Investment in Australia," RBA Research Discussion Papers rdp2005-12, Reserve Bank of Australia.
    2. Jerzy Marzec & Małgorzata Pawłowska, 2012. "Zależność między kredytem kupieckim a bankowym w modelu zapasów – wyniki badań branżowych w Polsce," Collegium of Economic Analysis Annals, Warsaw School of Economics, Collegium of Economic Analysis, issue 26, pages 117-128.

    More about this item


    Business fluctuations and cycles; Financial institutions;

    JEL classification:

    • E22 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment - - - Investment; Capital; Intangible Capital; Capacity
    • G14 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Information and Market Efficiency; Event Studies; Insider Trading

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