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Property debt overhang: the case of Irish SMEs

Author

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  • McCann, Fergal

    (Central Bank of Ireland)

  • McIndoe-Calder, Tara

    (Central Bank of Ireland)

Abstract

The detrimental impacts of credit booms, property booms and firm over-leverage are well-established in a growing literature highlighting their effects on household consump- tion, firm investment and economic growth. The link between credit-fuelled property market booms and firms' ability to service their debts has however up to this point not been studied. Using a unique data set on the property and "core" enterprise debts of Irish Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) at December 2013, we highlight the extent to which Irish non-real-estate SMEs have borrowed for property investment purposes. We show that the existence of such property-related debts is a crucial determinant of the probability of SME loan default, suggesting a large property-related debt overhang for these firms. We extend the analysis by showing that the intensity of firms' property- related borrowings has an additional impact on the probability of loan default. In doing so, we highlight an additional channel through which credit-driven property booms can have long-lasting harmful effects on economic growth prospects.

Suggested Citation

  • McCann, Fergal & McIndoe-Calder, Tara, 2014. "Property debt overhang: the case of Irish SMEs," Research Technical Papers 14/RT/14, Central Bank of Ireland.
  • Handle: RePEc:cbi:wpaper:14/rt/14
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
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    Cited by:

    1. Fergal McCann & Tara McIndoe-Calder, 2015. "Irish SME Property Exposure: What Do We Know?," The Economic and Social Review, Economic and Social Studies, vol. 46(1), pages 119-132.
    2. Conor M. O'Toole & Martina Lawless & Derek Lambert, 2015. "Non-Bank Financing in Ireland: A Comparative Perspective," The Economic and Social Review, Economic and Social Studies, vol. 46(1), pages 133-161.
    3. Lawless, Martina & O’Connell, Brian & O’Toole, Conor, 2015. "SME recovery following a financial crisis: Does debt overhang matter?," Journal of Financial Stability, Elsevier, vol. 19(C), pages 45-59.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Property markets; SMEs; credit risk; firm leverage.;

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