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Reexamining the empirical relation between loan risk and collateral: the roles of collateral characteristics and types

  • Allen N. Berger
  • W. Scott Frame
  • Vasso P. Ioannidou

This paper offers a possible explanation for the conflicting empirical results in the literature concerning the relation between loan risk and collateral. Specifically, we posit that different economic characteristics or types of collateral pledges may be associated with the empirical dominance of the four different risk-collateral channels implied by economic theory. For our sample, collateral overall is associated with lower loan risk premiums and a higher probability of ex post loan nonperformance (delinquency or default). This finding suggests that the dominant reason collateral is pledged is that banks require collateral from observably riskier borrowers ("lender selection" effect), while lower risk premiums arise because secured loans carry lower losses given default ("loss mitigation" effect). We also find that the risk-collateral channels depend on the economic characteristics and types of collateral. The lender selection effect appears to be especially important for outside collateral, the "risk-shifting" or "loss mitigation" effects for liquid collateral, and the "borrower selection" effect for nondivertible collateral. Among collateral types, we find that the lender selection effect is particularly strong for residential real estate collateral and that the risk shifting effect is important for pledged deposits and bank guarantees. Our results suggest that the conflicting results in the extant risk-collateral literature may be because different samples may be dominated by collateralized loans with different economic characteristics or different types of collateral.

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Paper provided by Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta in its series FRB Atlanta Working Paper with number 2011-12.

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Date of creation: 2011
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Handle: RePEc:fip:fedawp:2011-12
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  1. Efraim Benmelech & Nittai K. Bergman, 2008. "Liquidation Values and the Credibility of Financial Contract Renegotiation: Evidence from U.S. Airlines," NBER Working Papers 14059, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Banerjee, Abhijit V & Newman, Andrew F, 1993. "Occupational Choice and the Process of Development," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 101(2), pages 274-98, April.
  3. Voordeckers, Wim & Steijvers, Tensie, 2006. "Business collateral and personal commitments in SME lending," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 30(11), pages 3067-3086, November.
  4. 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.
  5. David W. Blackwell & Drew B. Winters, 1997. "Banking Relationships And The Effect Of Monitoring On Loan Pricing," Journal of Financial Research, Southern Finance Association;Southwestern Finance Association, vol. 20(2), pages 275-289, 06.
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  7. Efraim Benmelech & Nittai K. Bergman, 2010. "Bankruptcy and the Collateral Channel," NBER Working Papers 15708, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Berger, Allen N. & Scott Frame, W. & Ioannidou, Vasso, 2011. "Tests of ex ante versus ex post theories of collateral using private and public information," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 100(1), pages 85-97, April.
  9. Chan, Yuk-Shee & Thakor, Anjan V, 1987. " Collateral and Competitive Equilibria with Moral Hazard and Private Information," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 42(2), pages 345-63, June.
  10. Douglas Gale & Martin Hellwig, 1985. "Incentive-Compatible Debt Contracts: The One-Period Problem," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 52(4), pages 647-663.
  11. Rui Albuquerque & Hugo A. Hopenhayn, 2004. "Optimal Lending Contracts and Firm Dynamics," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 71(2), pages 285-315.
  12. Efraim Benmelech & Nittai K. Bergman, 2008. "Liquidation Values and the Credibility of Financial Contract Renegotiation: Evidence from U.S. Airlines," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 123(4), pages 1635-1677.
  13. Hans Degryse & Partick Van cayseele, 1998. "Relationship Lending within a Bank-based System: Evidence from European Small Business Data," Working Papers Department of Economics ces9816, KU Leuven, Faculty of Economics and Business, Department of Economics.
  14. Erik Lehmann & Neuberger, Doris, 2000. "Do Lending Relationships Matter? Evidence from Bank Survey Data in Germany," CoFE Discussion Paper 00-04, Center of Finance and Econometrics, University of Konstanz.
  15. Christophe Godlewski & Laurent Weill, 2011. "Does Collateral Help Mitigate Adverse Selection? A Cross-Country Analysis," Journal of Financial Services Research, Springer;Western Finance Association, vol. 40(1), pages 49-78, October.
  16. Sumit Agarwal, 2010. "Distance and Private Information in Lending," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 23(7), pages 2757-2788, July.
  17. Efraim Benmelech & Mark J. Garmaise & Tobias J. Moskowitz, 2005. "Do Liquidation Values Affect Financial Contracts? Evidence from Commercial Loan Contracts and Zoning Regulation," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 120(3), pages 1121-1154.
  18. Benmelech, Efraim & Bergman, Nittai K., 2009. "Collateral pricing," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 91(3), pages 339-360, March.
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