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Multiple Versus Single Banking Relationships

Author

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  • Detragiache, Enrica
  • Garella, Paolo
  • Guiso, Luigi

Abstract

This paper develops a theoretical model in which firms may choose multiple banking relationships to reduce the risk that financing will be denied by ‘relationship banks’ should the latter experience liquidity problems and refuse to roll over lines of credit. The inability to refinance from relationship banks signals unfavourable information about the quality of the firm’s project, which may also prevent the firm from obtaining credit from other banks. We show that if this ‘lemons’ problem is severe, it is optimal to establish a relationship with more than one bank in spite of higher transaction costs; if it is mild, a single banking relationship is optimal. We find that the severity of the lemons problem depends directly on the inefficiency of bankruptcy procedures and inversely on the ‘fragility’ of the banking system. The paper concludes with a comparison of bank-firm relationships in Italy and the United States, characterized respectively by multiple and single banking. We present evidence that bankruptcy costs are significantly higher and banks less fragile in Italy than in the United States, suggesting that the factors identified by the theoretical model are relevant in practice.

Suggested Citation

  • Detragiache, Enrica & Garella, Paolo & Guiso, Luigi, 1997. "Multiple Versus Single Banking Relationships," CEPR Discussion Papers 1649, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  • Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:1649
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Berger, Allen N. & Klapper, Leora F. & Udell, Gregory F., 2001. "The ability of banks to lend to informationally opaque small businesses," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 25(12), pages 2127-2167, December.
    2. Song Han & Dan Li, 2010. "The fragility of discretionary liquidity provision - lessons from the collapse of the auction rate securities market," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 2010-50, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
    3. Angelini, P. & Di Salvo, R. & Ferri, G., 1998. "Availability and cost of credit for small businesses: Customer relationships and credit cooperatives," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 22(6-8), pages 925-954, August.
    4. Schmieder, Christian & Memmel, Christoph & Stein, Ingrid, 2007. "Relationship lending: empirical evidence for Germany," Discussion Paper Series 2: Banking and Financial Studies 2007,14, Deutsche Bundesbank.
    5. Alberto Bennardo & Marco Pagano & Salvatore Piccolo, 2015. "Multiple Bank Lending, Creditor Rights, and Information Sharing," Review of Finance, European Finance Association, vol. 19(2), pages 519-570.
    6. Elyasiani, Elyas & Goldberg, Lawrence G., 2004. "Relationship lending: a survey of the literature," Journal of Economics and Business, Elsevier, vol. 56(4), pages 315-330.
    7. Carletti, Elena & Cerasi, Vittoria & Daltung, Sonja, 2007. "Multiple-bank lending: Diversification and free-riding in monitoring," Journal of Financial Intermediation, Elsevier, vol. 16(3), pages 425-451, July.
    8. Alberto Franco Pozzolo, 2004. "The role of guarantees in bank lending," Temi di discussione (Economic working papers) 528, Bank of Italy, Economic Research and International Relations Area.
    9. Owolabi, Oluwarotimi & Pal, Sarmistha, 2011. "The Value of Business Networks in Emerging Economies: An Analysis of Firms' External Financing Opportunities," IZA Discussion Papers 5738, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    10. Foglia, A. & Laviola, S. & Marullo Reedtz, P., 1998. "Multiple banking relationships and the fragility of corporate borrowers," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 22(10-11), pages 1441-1456, October.
    11. Elie Appelbaum, 2007. "Incomplete Contracts, Bankruptcy and the Firm’s Capital Structure," Working Papers 2007_06, York University, Department of Economics.
    12. Gómez-González, José Eduardo & Reyes, Nidia Ruth, 2011. "The number of banking relationships and the business cycle: New evidence from Colombia," Economic Systems, Elsevier, vol. 35(3), pages 408-418, September.
    13. C. Conigliani & G. Ferri & A. Generale, 1997. "The impact of the bank-firm relations on the propagation of monetary policy squeezes: an empirical assessment for Italy," BNL Quarterly Review, Banca Nazionale del Lavoro, vol. 50(202), pages 271-299.
    14. Masayo Shikimi, 2013. "Do firms benefit from multiple banking relationships? Evidence from small and medium- sized firms in Japan," International Economics and Economic Policy, Springer, vol. 10(1), pages 127-157, March.
    15. Paolo Finaldi Russo & Paola Rossi, 2001. "Credit constraints in Italian industrial districts," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 33(11), pages 1469-1477.
    16. Annalisa Castelli & Gerald P. Dwyer & Iftekhar Hasan, 2006. "Bank relationships and small firms’ financial performance," FRB Atlanta Working Paper 2006-05, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta.
    17. Brunello, Giorgio & Graziano, Clara & Parigi, Bruno, 2001. "Executive compensation and firm performance in Italy," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 19(1-2), pages 133-161, January.
    18. N. Berger, Allen & F. Udell, Gregory, 1998. "The economics of small business finance: The roles of private equity and debt markets in the financial growth cycle," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 22(6-8), pages 613-673, August.
    19. Leonardo Gambacorta & Paolo Emilio Mistrulli, 2014. "Bank Heterogeneity and Interest Rate Setting: What Lessons Have We Learned since Lehman Brothers?," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 46(4), pages 753-778, June.
    20. Saumitra, Bhaduri & Sunanda, Rathi, 2012. "Bank firm nexus and its impact on firm performance: an Indian case study," MPRA Paper 38000, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    21. Felix J. Lopez Iturriaga, 2005. "Debt ownership structure and legal system: an international analysis," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 37(3), pages 355-365.
    22. Sapienza, Paola, 2002. "What Do State-Owned Firms Maximize? Evidence from the Italian Banks," CEPR Discussion Papers 3168, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    23. Ghosh, Saibal, 2007. "Relationship Lending and Financing Constraints: Firm-Level Evidence for India," MPRA Paper 24253, University Library of Munich, Germany.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Corporate Finance; Multiple Banking; Relationship Banking;

    JEL classification:

    • G21 - Financial Economics - - Financial Institutions and Services - - - Banks; Other Depository Institutions; Micro Finance Institutions; Mortgages
    • G30 - Financial Economics - - Corporate Finance and Governance - - - General
    • G33 - Financial Economics - - Corporate Finance and Governance - - - Bankruptcy; Liquidation

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