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The Structure of Multiple Credit Relationships: Evidence from US Firms

  • Luigi Guiso
  • Raoul Minetti

When firms borrow from multiple concentrated creditors such as banks they appear to differentiate their allocation of borrowing. In this paper, we put forward hypotheses for this borrowing pattern based on incomplete contract theories and test them using a sample of small U.S. firms. We find that firms with more valuable, more redeployable, and more homogeneous assets differentiate borrowing more sharply across their concentrated creditors. We also find that borrowing differentiation is inversely related to restructuring costs and positively related to firms’ informational transparency. This evidence supports the predictions of incomplete contract theories: the structure of credit relationships appears to be used as a device to discipline creditors and entrepreneurs, especially during corporate reorganizations.

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Paper provided by European University Institute in its series Economics Working Papers with number ECO2007/46.

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Date of creation: 2007
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Handle: RePEc:eui:euiwps:eco2007/46
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  1. Gilson, Stuart C. & John, Kose & Lang, Larry H. P., 1990. "Troubled debt restructurings*1: An empirical study of private reorganization of firms in default," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 27(2), pages 315-353, October.
  2. Carletti, Elena & Cerasi, Vittoria & Daltung, Sonja, 2004. "Multiple-bank lending: diversification and free-riding in monitoring," Sonderforschungsbereich 504 Publications 04-15, Sonderforschungsbereich 504, Universität Mannheim;Sonderforschungsbereich 504, University of Mannheim.
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  6. Hans Degryse & Partick Van cayseele, 1998. "Relationship Lending within a Bank-based System: Evidence from European Small Business Data," Center for Economic Studies - Discussion papers ces9816, Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, Centrum voor Economische Studiën.
  7. Franz Hubert & Dorothea Schäfer, 2002. "Coordination Failure with Multiple-Source Lending, the Cost of Protection Against a Powerful Lender," Journal of Institutional and Theoretical Economics (JITE), Mohr Siebeck, Tübingen, vol. 158(2), pages 256-, June.
  8. Oliver Hart, 2001. "Financial Contracting," NBER Working Papers 8285, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Efraim Benmelech & Mark J. Garmaise & Tobias Moskowitz, 2004. "Do Liquidation Values Affect Financial Contracts? Evidence from Commercial Loan Contracts and Zoning Regulation," NBER Working Papers 11004, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Yosha Oved, 1995. "Information Disclosure Costs and the Choice of Financing Source," Journal of Financial Intermediation, Elsevier, vol. 4(1), pages 3-20, January.
  11. Ralf Elsas & Frank Heinemann & Marcel Tyrell, 2004. "Multiple but Asymmetric Bank Financing: The Case of Relationship Lending," Working Paper Series: Finance and Accounting 141, Department of Finance, Goethe University Frankfurt am Main.
  12. Alessandro Penati & Luigi Zingales, 1997. "Efficiency and Distribution in Financial Restructuring: The Case of the Ferruzzi Group," CRSP working papers 466, Center for Research in Security Prices, Graduate School of Business, University of Chicago.
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  16. repec:cup:cbooks:9780521566087 is not listed on IDEAS
  17. Shleifer, Andrei & Vishny, Robert W, 1992. " Liquidation Values and Debt Capacity: A Market Equilibrium Approach," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 47(4), pages 1343-66, September.
  18. Michel A. Habib & D. Bruce Johnsen, 1999. "The Financing and Redeployment of Specific Assets," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 54(2), pages 693-720, 04.
  19. Guiso, Luigi, 1997. "High-Tech Firms and Credit Rationing," CEPR Discussion Papers 1696, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  20. Manove, Michael & Padilla, A Jorge & Pagano, Marco, 2001. "Collateral versus Project Screening: A Model of Lazy Banks," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 32(4), pages 726-44, Winter.
  21. Douglas W Diamond, 1992. "Bank Loan Maturity and Priority when Borrowers can Refinance," CEPR Financial Markets Paper 0022, European Science Foundation Network in Financial Markets, c/o C.E.P.R, 77 Bastwick Street, London EC1V 3PZ..
  22. von Rheinbaben, Joachim & Ruckes, Martin, 2004. "The number and the closeness of bank relationships," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 28(7), pages 1597-1615, July.
  23. Weiss, Lawrence A., 1990. "Bankruptcy resolution: Direct costs and violation of priority of claims," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 27(2), pages 285-314, October.
  24. Bengt Holmstrom & Jean Tirole, 1994. "Financial Intermediation, Loanable Funds and the Real Sector," Working papers 95-1, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
  25. Guiso, Luigi & Minetti, Raoul, 2004. "Multiple Creditors and Information Rights: Theory and Evidence from US Firms," CEPR Discussion Papers 4278, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  26. Bolton, Patrick & Scharfstein, David S, 1996. "Optimal Debt Structure and the Number of Creditors," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 104(1), pages 1-25, February.
  27. Enrica Detragiache & Paolo Garella & Luigi Guiso, 2000. "Multiple versus Single Banking Relationships: Theory and Evidence," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 55(3), pages 1133-1161, 06.
  28. Carletti, Elena, 2004. "The structure of bank relationships, endogenous monitoring, and loan rates," Journal of Financial Intermediation, Elsevier, vol. 13(1), pages 58-86, January.
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