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Firm Credit in Europe: A Tale of Three Crises

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  • Holton, Sarah

    (Central Bank of Ireland)

  • Lawless, Martina

    (Central Bank of Ireland)

  • McCann, Fergal

    (Central Bank of Ireland)

Abstract

This paper analyses the effects of the recent euro area economic, financial and debt crisis on SMEs’ access to bank finance. We use a survey on access to finance of SMEs in the euro area carried out by the European Central Bank during 2009 and 2010 to examine the impact of macroeconomic factors on developments in loan applications and approvals as well as changes in credit terms and conditions. At the country level, we identify three distinct aspects of the recent crisis in Europe affecting firm credit through different channels. A weak real economy is found to affect the demand for bank financ- ing. Financial conditions (proxied by the median credit default swap for banks in each country and sovereign yields) predominantly affect the probability of loan rejection and the terms and conditions of credit rather than the demand for credit. We interpret this as evidence of a bank balance sheet channel negatively impacting credit provision. Crucially, the level of debt overhang affects all aspects of SME financing, with suggestive evidence that the effect on credit rejection operates through the bank balance sheet channel, as opposed to being due to the borrower balance sheet.

Suggested Citation

  • Holton, Sarah & Lawless, Martina & McCann, Fergal, 2012. "Firm Credit in Europe: A Tale of Three Crises," Research Technical Papers 04/RT/12, Central Bank of Ireland.
  • Handle: RePEc:cbi:wpaper:04/rt/12
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Carmen M. Reinhart & Kenneth S. Rogoff, 2009. "Varieties of Crises and Their Dates," Introductory Chapters,in: This Time Is Different: Eight Centuries of Financial Folly Princeton University Press.
    2. Jimenez Porras, G. & Ongena, S. & Peydro, J.L. & Saurina, J., 2012. "Credit Supply versus Demand : Bank and Firm Balance-Sheet Channels in Good and Crisis Times," Discussion Paper 2012-005, Tilburg University, Center for Economic Research.
    3. Ben S. Bernanke & Mark Gertler, 1995. "Inside the Black Box: The Credit Channel of Monetary Policy Transmission," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 9(4), pages 27-48, Fall.
    4. Matteo Ciccarelli & Angela Maddaloni & Jose Luis Peydro, 2015. "Trusting the Bankers: A New Look at the Credit Channel of Monetary Policy," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 18(4), pages 979-1002, October.
    5. Del Giovane, Paolo & Eramo, Ginette & Nobili, Andrea, 2011. "Disentangling demand and supply in credit developments: A survey-based analysis for Italy," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 35(10), pages 2719-2732, October.
    6. Ugo Albertazzi & Domenico J. Marchetti, 2010. "Credit supply, flight to quality and evergreening: an analysis of bank-firm relationships after Lehman," Temi di discussione (Economic working papers) 756, Bank of Italy, Economic Research and International Relations Area.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Holton, Sarah & McCann, Fergal, 2012. "Irish SME credit supply and demand: comparisons across surveys and countries," Economic Letters 08/EL/12, Central Bank of Ireland.
    2. Ferrando, Annalisa & Popov, Alexander & Udell, Gregory F., 2015. "Sovereign stress, unconventional monetary policy, and SME access to finance," Working Paper Series 1820, European Central Bank.
    3. Brei, Michael & Schclarek, Alfredo, 2015. "A theoretical model of bank lending: Does ownership matter in times of crisis?," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 50(C), pages 298-307.
    4. Martin Pospisil & Jiri Schwarz, 2014. "Bankruptcy, Investment, and Financial Constraints: Evidence from a Post-Transition Economy," Working Papers IES 2014/12, Charles University Prague, Faculty of Social Sciences, Institute of Economic Studies, revised Apr 2014.
    5. Bahar Öztürk & Mico Mrkaic, 2014. "SMEs’ Access to Finance in the Euro Area; What Helps or Hampers?," IMF Working Papers 14/78, International Monetary Fund.
    6. Casey, Eddie & O'Toole, Conor, 2013. "Bank-lending constraints and alternative financing during the financial crisis: Evidence from European SMEs," Papers WP450, Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI).
    7. Francesca Barbiero & Michael Blanga-Gubbay & Valeria Cipollone & Koen De Backer & Sébastien Miroudot & Alexandros Ragoussis & André Sapir & Reinhilde Veugelers & Erkki Vihriälä & Guntram B. Wolff & Ge, . "Manufacturing Europe’s future," Blueprints, Bruegel, number 795.
    8. O'Toole, Conor & Gerlach, Petra & O'Connell, Brian, 2013. "Measuring Credit Constraints for Irish SMEs," Research Notes RN2013/1/3, Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI).
    9. Gerlach, Petra & O'Connell, Brian & O'Toole, Conor, 2013. "SME Credit Constraints and Macroeconomic Effects," Papers WP467, Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI).

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