The use of debt and equity in optimal financial contracts
We consider an environment in which risk-neutral firms must obtain external finance. They have access to two kinds of linear, stochastic investment opportunities. For one, return realizations are costlessly observed by all agents. For the other, return realizations are costlessly observed only by the investing firm; however, they can be (privately) observed by outsiders who bear a fixed verification cost. Thus, the second investment opportunity is subject to a standard costly state verification (CSV) problem of the type considered by Townsend (1979), Gale and Hellwig (1985), or Williamson (1986, 1987). ; We examine the optimal allocations of investment between the two kinds of projects, as well as the optimal contract used to finance it. We show that the optimal contractual outcome can be supported by having firms issue appropriate (and determinate) quantities of debt and equity securities to outside investors. ; The optimal debt-equity ratio necessarily depends (in part) on the firm's asset structure. Investments in projects subject to CSV problems are associated (in a sense to be made precise) with the use of debt - as might be expected from the existing CSV literature. Investments in projects with publicly observable returns are associated with the use of external equity. ; We examine in detail the relationship between the optimal asset and liability structure of the firm. We also describe conditions under which an increase in the cost of state verification shifts the composition of investment towards projects with observable returns, and reduces the optimal debt-equity ratio. Interestingly, the optimal debt-equity ratio is also shown to depend on factors that are irrelevant to asset allocations. ; Finally, a large part of the interest in CSV environments has been due to the fact that they may result in equilibrium credit rationing. Our analysis has strong implications for the possibility of equilibrium credit rationing in more general CSV models.
|Date of creation:||1996|
|Date of revision:|
|Publication status:||Published in Journal of Financial Intermediation (Vol. 8, No. 4, October 1999, pp. 270-316)|
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: 90 Hennepin Avenue, P.O. Box 291, Minneapolis, MN 55480-0291|
Phone: (612) 204-5000
Web page: http://minneapolisfed.org/
More information through EDIRC
|Order Information:|| Web: http://www.minneapolisfed.org/pubs/ Email: |
References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Stephen D. Williamson, 1984.
"Costly Monitoring, Loan Contracts and Equilibrium Credit Rationing,"
572, Queen's University, Department of Economics.
- Stephen D. Williamson, 1987. "Costly Monitoring, Loan Contracts, and Equilibrium Credit Rationing," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 102(1), pages 135-145.
- Boyd, John H. & Prescott, Edward C., 1986.
Journal of Economic Theory,
Elsevier, vol. 38(2), pages 211-232, April.
- Arnoud W A Boot & Anjan V Thakor, 1992.
CEPR Financial Markets Paper
0020, European Science Foundation Network in Financial Markets, c/o C.E.P.R, 77 Bastwick Street, London EC1V 3PZ..
- Douglas W. Diamond, 1984. "Financial Intermediation and Delegated Monitoring," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 51(3), pages 393-414.
- Smith, Bruce D. & Wang, Cheng, 1998.
"Repeated insurance relationships in a costly state verification model: With an application to deposit insurance,"
Journal of Monetary Economics,
Elsevier, vol. 42(2), pages 207-240, July.
- Bruce D. Smith & Cheng Wang, 1997. "Repeated insurance relationships in a costly state verification model: with an application to deposit insurance," Working Papers 574, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
- Smith, Bruce D. & Wang, Cheng, 1998. "Repeated Insurance Relationships in a Costly State Verification Model: With an Application to Deposit Insurance," Staff General Research Papers 5194, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
- Boyd, John H. & Smith, Bruce D., 1992. "Intermediation and the equilibrium allocation of investment capital : Implications for economic development," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 30(3), pages 409-432, December.
- Mikkelson, Wayne H. & Partch, M. Megan & Shah, Kshitij, 1997. "Ownership and operating performance of companies that go public," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 44(3), pages 281-307, June.
- Fluck, Zsuzsanna, 1998. "Optimal Financial Contracting: Debt versus Outside Equity," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 11(2), pages 383-418.
- Krasa, Stefan & Villamil, Anne P., 1992. "Monitoring the monitor: An incentive structure for a financial intermediary," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 57(1), pages 197-221.
- Stephen D. Williamson, 1984.
"Costly Monitoring, Financial Intermediation, and Equilibrium Credit Rationing,"
583, Queen's University, Department of Economics.
- Williamson, Stephen D., 1986. "Costly monitoring, financial intermediation, and equilibrium credit rationing," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 18(2), pages 159-179, September.
- Besanko, David & Thakor, Anjan V, 1987. "Collateral and Rationing: Sorting Equilibria in Monopolistic and Competitive Credit Markets," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 28(3), pages 671-89, October.
- Boyd, John H & Smith, Bruce D, 1994. "How Good Are Standard Debt Contracts? Stochastic versus Nonstochastic Monitoring in a Costly State Verification Environment," The Journal of Business, University of Chicago Press, vol. 67(4), pages 539-61, October.
- Boyd, John & Smith, Bruce, 1996.
"The Coevolution of the Real and Financial Sectors in the Growth Process,"
World Bank Economic Review,
World Bank Group, vol. 10(2), pages 371-96, May.
- John H. Boyd & Bruce D. Smith, 1996. "The co-evolution of the real and financial sectors in the growth process," Working Papers 541, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
- Seward, James K, 1990. " Corporate Financial Policy and the Theory of Financial Intermediation," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 45(2), pages 351-77, June.
- Jensen, Michael C & Murphy, Kevin J, 1990.
"Performance Pay and Top-Management Incentives,"
Journal of Political Economy,
University of Chicago Press, vol. 98(2), pages 225-64, April.
- John H. Boyd & Bruce D. Smith, 1995.
"The evolution of debt and equity markets in economic development,"
542, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
- Bruce D. Smith & John H. Boyd, 1998. "The evolution of debt and equity markets in economic development," Economic Theory, Springer, vol. 12(3), pages 519-560.
- Robert M. Townsend, 1979.
"Optimal contracts and competitive markets with costly state verification,"
45, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
- Townsend, Robert M., 1979. "Optimal contracts and competitive markets with costly state verification," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 21(2), pages 265-293, October.
- 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.
- Bruce D. Smith & John H. Boyd, 1998. "Capital market imperfections in a monetary growth model," Economic Theory, Springer, vol. 11(2), pages 241-273.
- Valerie R. Bencivenga & Bruce D. Smith, 1991. "Financial Intermediation and Endogenous Growth," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 58(2), pages 195-209.
- Boyd, John H & Smith, Bruce D, 1993.
"The Equilibrium Allocation of Investment Capital in the Presence of Adverse Selection and Costly State Verification,"
Springer, vol. 3(3), pages 427-51, July.
- Boyd, J.h. & Smith, B.D., 1991. "The Equilibrium Allocation of Investment Capital in the Presence of Adverse Selection and Costly State Verification," RCER Working Papers 289, University of Rochester - Center for Economic Research (RCER).
- Bernanke, Ben & Gertler, Mark, 1989. "Agency Costs, Net Worth, and Business Fluctuations," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 79(1), pages 14-31, March.
- Levine, Ross, 1991. " Stock Markets, Growth, and Tax Policy," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 46(4), pages 1445-65, September.
- Boyd, John H. & Smith, Bruce D., 1997. "Capital Market Imperfections, International Credit Markets, and Nonconvergence," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 73(2), pages 335-364, April.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:fip:fedmwp:537. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Janelle Ruswick)
If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.
If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.
If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.
Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.