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Does corporate lending by banks and finance companies differ? Evidence on specialization in private debt contracting

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  • Mark S. Carey
  • Mitchell A. Post
  • Steven A. Sharpe

Abstract

This paper establishes empirically that specialization in private-market corporate lending exists, adding a new dimension to the public vs. private debt distinctions now common in the literature on debt contracting and financial intermediation. Using a large database of individual loans, we compare lending by finance companies to that by banks. The evidence implies that it is intermediaries in general that are special in solving information problems, not banks in particular. But lending by the two types of institutions is not identical. Finance companies tend to serve observably riskier borrowers, especially highly leveraged borrowers, although banks and finance companies do compete across the spectrum of borrower risk. The evidence supports both regulatory and reputational explanations for this specialization and perhaps an explanation based on institutional differences in borrower monitoring and control. In passing, we shed light on various theories of debt contracting and intermediation and also present facts about finance companies, which have received little attention.

Suggested Citation

  • Mark S. Carey & Mitchell A. Post & Steven A. Sharpe, 1996. "Does corporate lending by banks and finance companies differ? Evidence on specialization in private debt contracting," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 96-25, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (US).
  • Handle: RePEc:fip:fedgfe:96-25
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    References listed on IDEAS

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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. Robert DeYoung & William Hunter & Gregory Udell, 2004. "The Past, Present, and Probable Future for Community Banks," Journal of Financial Services Research, Springer;Western Finance Association, vol. 25(2), pages 85-133, April.
    3. Myron Kwast & S. Passmore, 1999. "The Subsidy Provided by the Federal Safety Net: Theory and Evidence," Journal of Financial Services Research, Springer;Western Finance Association, vol. 16(2), pages 125-145, December.
    4. Nancy Huyghebaert & Linda Gucht & Cynthia Hulle, 2007. "The Choice between Bank Debt and Trace Credit in Business Start-ups," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 29(4), pages 435-452, December.
    5. Godlewski, Christophe, 2008. "Duration of loan arrangement and syndicate organization," MPRA Paper 10953, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    6. Glenn B. Canner & Elizabeth Laderman & Andreas Lehnert & Wayne Passmore, 2002. "Does the Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) cause banks to provide a subsidy to some mortgage borrowers?," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 2002-19, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (US).
    7. Cihan Yalcin & Spiros Bougheas & Paul Mizen, 2004. "The Impact of Firm-Specific Characteristics on the Response to Monetary Policy Actions," Central Bank Review, Research and Monetary Policy Department, Central Bank of the Republic of Turkey, vol. 4(1), pages 1-30.
    8. Doris Neuberger, 2005. "What’s Common to Relationship Banking and Relationship Investing? Reflections within the Contractual Theory of the Firm," Finance 0510001, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    9. Stefan Klonner & Ashok Rai, 2008. "Cosigners as Collateral," Center for Development Economics 2008-08, Department of Economics, Williams College.
    10. Doris Neuberger, 2005. "What’s Common to Relationship Banking and Relationship Investing? Reflections within the Contractual Theory of the Firm," Finance 0503001, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    11. Hyytinen, Ari & Pajarinen, Mika, 2002. "Small Business Finance in Finland. A Descriptive Study," Discussion Papers 812, The Research Institute of the Finnish Economy.
    12. Evan Gatev & Philip E. Strahan, 2003. "Banks' Advantage in Hedging Liquidity Risk: Theory and Evidence from the Commercial Paper Market," Center for Financial Institutions Working Papers 03-01, Wharton School Center for Financial Institutions, University of Pennsylvania.
    13. Kenneth Daniels & Gabriel Ramirez, 2008. "Information, Credit Risk, Lender Specialization and Loan Pricing: Evidence from the DIP Financing Market," Journal of Financial Services Research, Springer;Western Finance Association, vol. 34(1), pages 35-59, August.
    14. Cole, Rebel & Sokolyk, Tatyana, 2016. "Who needs credit and who gets credit? Evidence from the surveys of small business finances," Journal of Financial Stability, Elsevier, vol. 24(C), pages 40-60.
    15. Mehdi Nekhili, 1999. "Le choix du type et de la maturité de la dette par les firmes françaises," Revue Finance Contrôle Stratégie, revues.org, vol. 2(3), pages 179-206, September.
    16. Tom Vanacker & Sophie Manigart, 2010. "Pecking order and debt capacity considerations for high-growth companies seeking financing," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 35(1), pages 53-69, July.
    17. Hernán Ortiz-Molina & María Penas, 2008. "Lending to small businesses: the role of loan maturity in addressing information problems," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 30(4), pages 361-383, April.
    18. Cole, Rebel, 2010. "Bank credit, trade credit or no credit: Evidence from the Surveys of Small Business Finances," MPRA Paper 24689, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised 15 Mar 2010.
    19. Klapper, Leora, 2001. "The uniqueness of short-term collateralization," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2544, The World Bank.
    20. David C. Smith, 2003. "Loans to Japanese borrowers," International Finance Discussion Papers 769, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
    21. Doris Neuberger, 2005. "What’s Common to Relationship Banking and Relationship Investing? Reflections within the Contractual Theory of the Firm," Finance 0510003, University Library of Munich, Germany.

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    Keywords

    Bank loans ; Debt;

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