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The effects of megamergers on efficiency and prices: evidence from a bank profit function

  • Jalal D. Akhavein
  • Allen N. Berger
  • David B. Humphrey

This paper examines the efficiency and price effects of mergers by applying a frontier profit function to data on bank ``megamergers.'' We find that merged banks experience a statistically significant 16 percentage point average increase in profit-efficiency rank relative to other large banks. Most of the improvement is from increasing revenues, including a shift in outputs from securities to loans, a higher-valued product. Improvements were greatest for the banks with the lowest efficiencies prior to merging, who therefore had the greatest capacity for improvement. By comparison, the effects on profits from merger-related changes in prices were found to be very small.

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Paper provided by Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.) in its series Finance and Economics Discussion Series with number 1997-9.

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Date of creation: 1997
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Handle: RePEc:fip:fedgfe:1997-9
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  1. Jalal Akhavein & PVBA Swamy & Stephen Taubman, 1994. "A General Method of Deriving the Efficiencies of Banks from a Profit Function," Center for Financial Institutions Working Papers 94-26, Wharton School Center for Financial Institutions, University of Pennsylvania.
  2. Allen N. Berger & Timothy H. Hannan, 1993. "Using efficiency measures to distinguish among alternative explanations of the structure-performance relationship in banking," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 93-18, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  3. Allen N. Berger & Timothy H. Hannan, 1998. "The Efficiency Cost Of Market Power In The Banking Industry: A Test Of The "Quiet Life" And Related Hypotheses," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 80(3), pages 454-465, August.
  4. Houston, Joel F. & Ryngaert, Michael D., 1994. "The overall gains from large bank mergers," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 18(6), pages 1155-1176, December.
  5. Sealey, Calvin W, Jr & Lindley, James T, 1977. "Inputs, Outputs, and a Theory of Production and Cost at Depository Financial Institutions," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 32(4), pages 1251-66, September.
  6. Shepherd, William G, 1986. "Tobin's q and the Structure-Performance Relationship: Comment," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 76(5), pages 1205-10, December.
  7. Benston, George J & Hunter, William C & Wall, Larry D, 1995. "Motivations for Bank Mergers and Acquisitions: Enhancing the Deposit Insurance Put Option versus Earnings Diversification," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 27(3), pages 777-88, August.
  8. Allen N. Berger & Timothy H. Hannan, 1987. "The price-concentration relationship in banking," Research Papers in Banking and Financial Economics 100, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  9. Berger, Allen N, 1995. "The Relationship between Capital and Earnings in Banking," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 27(2), pages 432-56, May.
  10. Berger, Allen N. & Hancock, Diana & Humphrey, David B., 1993. "Bank efficiency derived from the profit function," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 17(2-3), pages 317-347, April.
  11. Rhoades, Stephen A., 1985. "Market share as a source of market power: Implications and some evidence," Journal of Economics and Business, Elsevier, vol. 37(4), pages 343-363, December.
  12. Joseph P. Hughes & William Lang & Loretta J. Mester & Choon-Geol Moon, 1996. "Efficient banking under interstate branching," Proceedings, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.), pages 1045-1075.
  13. Sam Peltzman, 1977. "The Gains and Losses From Industrial Concentration," NBER Working Papers 0163, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  14. Aruna Srinivasan & Larry D. Wall, 1992. "Cost savings associated with bank mergers," Working Paper 92-2, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta.
  15. Aly, Hassan Y, et al, 1990. "Technical, Scale, and Allocative Efficiencies in U.S. Banking: An Empirical Investigation," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 72(2), pages 211-18, May.
  16. Alden L. Toevs, 1992. "Under what circumstances do bank mergers improve efficiency?," Proceedings 378, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago.
  17. Berger, Allen N. & Hunter, William C. & Timme, Stephen G., 1993. "The efficiency of financial institutions: A review and preview of research past, present and future," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 17(2-3), pages 221-249, April.
  18. Demsetz, Harold, 1973. "Industry Structure, Market Rivalry, and Public Policy," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 16(1), pages 1-9, April.
  19. Pilloff, Steven J, 1996. "Performance Changes and Shareholder Wealth Creation Associated with Mergers of Publicly Traded Banking Institutions," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 28(3), pages 294-310, August.
  20. Allen N. Berger & J. David Cummins & Mary A. Weiss, 1995. "The coexistence of multiple distribution systems for financial services: the case of property-liability insurance," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 95-22, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  21. Smirlock, Michael & Gilligan, Thomas & Marshall, William, 1984. "Tobin's q and the Structure-Performance Relationship," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 74(5), pages 1051-60, December.
  22. Aruna Srinivasan, 1992. "Are there cost savings from bank mergers?," Economic Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta, issue Mar, pages 17-28.
  23. Prager, Robin A & Hannan, Timothy H, 1998. "Do Substantial Horizontal Mergers Generate Significant Price Effects? Evidence from the Banking Industry," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 46(4), pages 433-52, December.
  24. Ferrier, Gary D. & Lovell, C. A. Knox, 1990. "Measuring cost efficiency in banking : Econometric and linear programming evidence," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 46(1-2), pages 229-245.
  25. Shaffer, Sherrill, 1993. "Can megamergers improve bank efficiency?," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 17(2-3), pages 423-436, April.
  26. Cornett, Marcia Millon & Tehranian, Hassan, 1992. "Changes in corporate performance associated with bank acquisitions," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 31(2), pages 211-234, April.
  27. Allen N. Berger & David B. Humphrey, 1992. "Megamergers in banking and the use of cost efficiency as an antitrust defense," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 203, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  28. Schmidt, Peter & Sickles, Robin C, 1984. "Production Frontiers and Panel Data," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 2(4), pages 367-74, October.
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