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The Impact of the Financial System's Structure on Firms' Financial Constraints

  • Christopher F. Baum

    ()

    (Boston College
    DIW Berlin)

  • Dorothea Schäfer

    ()

    (DIW Berlin)

  • Oleksandr Talavera

    (University of East Anglia)

We estimate firms' cash flow sensitivity of cash to empirically test how the financial system's structure and activity level influence their financial constraints. For this purpose we merge Almeida et al. (2004), a path-breaking new design for evaluating a firm's financial constraints, with Levine (2002), who paved the way for comparative analysis of financial systems around the world. We conjecture that a country's financial system, both in terms of its structure and its level of development, influences the cash flow sensitivity of cash of constrained firms but leaves unconstrained firms unaffected. We test our hypothesis with a large international sample of 80,000 firm-years from 1989 to 2006. Our findings reveal that both the structure of the financial system and its level of development matter. Bank-based financial systems provide the constrained firms with easier access to external financing.

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Paper provided by Boston College Department of Economics in its series Boston College Working Papers in Economics with number 690.

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Date of creation: 08 Oct 2008
Date of revision: 03 Sep 2010
Publication status: published, Journal of International Money and Finance, 2011, 30, 678-691
Handle: RePEc:boc:bocoec:690
Contact details of provider: Postal: Boston College, 140 Commonwealth Avenue, Chestnut Hill MA 02467 USA
Phone: 617-552-3670
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Web page: http://fmwww.bc.edu/EC/
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  1. Tim Opler & Lee Pinkowitz & Rene Stulz & Rohan Williamson, 1997. "The Determinants and Implications of Corporate Cash Holdings," NBER Working Papers 6234, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Hoshi, Takeo & Kashyap, Anil & Scharfstein, David, 1991. "Corporate Structure, Liquidity, and Investment: Evidence from Japanese Industrial Groups," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 106(1), pages 33-60, February.
  3. Bronwyn H. Hall, Jacques Mairesse and Benoit Mulkay., 1998. "Firm Level Investment in France and the United States: An Exploration of What We Have Learned in Twenty Years," Economics Working Papers 98-261, University of California at Berkeley.
  4. Acharya, Viral V. & Almeida, Heitor & Campello, Murillo, 2007. "Is cash negative debt? A hedging perspective on corporate financial policies," Journal of Financial Intermediation, Elsevier, vol. 16(4), pages 515-554, October.
  5. Heitor Almeida & Murillo Campello & Michael S. Weisbach, 2004. "The Cash Flow Sensitivity of Cash," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 59(4), pages 1777-1804, 08.
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  8. Jarrad Harford, 1999. "Corporate Cash Reserves and Acquisitions," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 54(6), pages 1969-1997, December.
  9. Ross Levine, 2002. "Bank-Based or Market-Based Financial Systems: Which is Better?," William Davidson Institute Working Papers Series 442, William Davidson Institute at the University of Michigan.
  10. Demirguc-Kunt, Asli & Maksimovic, Vojislav, 2000. "Funding growth in bank-based and market-based financial systems : evidence from firm level data," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2432, The World Bank.
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  15. Steven Fazzari & R. Glenn Hubbard & Bruce C. Petersen, 1987. "Financing Constraints and Corporate Investment," NBER Working Papers 2387, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  16. Love, Inessa, 2001. "Financial development and financing constraints - international evidence from the structural investment model," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2694, The World Bank.
  17. Kim, Chang-Soo & Mauer, David C. & Sherman, Ann E., 1998. "The Determinants of Corporate Liquidity: Theory and Evidence," Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis, Cambridge University Press, vol. 33(03), pages 335-359, September.
  18. Kaplan, Steven N & Zingales, Luigi, 1997. "Do Investment-Cash Flow Sensitivities Provide Useful Measures of Financing Constraints," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 112(1), pages 169-215, February.
  19. Myers, Stewart C., 1977. "Determinants of corporate borrowing," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 5(2), pages 147-175, November.
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  21. Stephen Bond & Julie Ann Elston & Jacques Mairesse & Beno�t Mulkay, 2003. "Financial Factors and Investment in Belgium, France, Germany, and the United Kingdom: A Comparison Using Company Panel Data," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 85(1), pages 153-165, February.
  22. Steven M. Fazzari & R. Glenn Hubbard & Bruce C. Petersen, 2000. "Investment-Cash Flow Sensitivities Are Useful: A Comment On Kaplan And Zingales," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 115(2), pages 695-705, May.
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