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Real Effects of Financial Distress: The Role of Heterogeneity

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  • Francisco Buera
  • Sudipto Karmakar

Abstract

What are the heterogeneous effects of financial shocks on firms' behavior? This paper evaluates and answers this question from both an empirical and a theoretical perspective. Using micro data from Portugal during the sovereign debt crisis, starting in 2010, we document that highly leveraged firms and firms that had a larger share of short-term debt on their balance sheets contracted more in the aftermath of a financial shock. We use a standard model to analyze the conditions under which leverage and debt maturity determine the sensitivity of firms' investment decisions to financial shocks. We show that the presence of long-term investment projects and frictions to the issuance of long-term debt are needed for the model to rationalize the empirical findings. We conclude that the differential responses of firms to a financial shock do not provide unambiguous information to identify these shocks. Rather, we argue that this information should be use to test for the relevance of important model assumptions.

Suggested Citation

  • Francisco Buera & Sudipto Karmakar, 2018. "Real Effects of Financial Distress: The Role of Heterogeneity," Working Papers REM 2018/36, ISEG - Lisbon School of Economics and Management, REM, Universidade de Lisboa.
  • Handle: RePEc:ise:remwps:wp0362018
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Degryse, Hans & Karapetyan, Artashes & Karmakar, Sudipto, 2018. "To Ask or Not To Ask? Bank Capital Requirements and Loan Collateralization," CEPR Discussion Papers 13331, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    2. Degryse, Hans & Karapetyan, Artashes & Karmakar, Sudipto, 2019. "To ask or not to ask: collateral vs screening in lending relationships," Bank of England working papers 778, Bank of England.
    3. Neil Mehrotra, 2018. "Debt Sustainability in a Low Interest Rate World," 2018 Meeting Papers 285, Society for Economic Dynamics.
    4. Hans Degryse & Artashes Karapetyan & Sudipto Karmakar, 2018. "To Ask or Not To Ask? Collateral versus Screening in Lending Relationships," Working Papers REM 2018/49, ISEG - Lisbon School of Economics and Management, REM, Universidade de Lisboa.
    5. Luísa Farinha & Marina-Eliza Spaliara & Serafeim Tsoukas, 2018. "Bank shocks and firm performance: New evidence from the sovereign debt crisis," Working Papers w201824, Banco de Portugal, Economics and Research Department.
    6. Nicolas Crouzet & Neil R. Mehrotra, 2018. "Small and Large Firms Over the Business Cycle," Working Papers 18-09, Center for Economic Studies, U.S. Census Bureau.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • E44 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Money and Interest Rates - - - Financial Markets and the Macroeconomy
    • F34 - International Economics - - International Finance - - - International Lending and Debt Problems
    • G12 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Asset Pricing; Trading Volume; Bond Interest Rates
    • H63 - Public Economics - - National Budget, Deficit, and Debt - - - Debt; Debt Management; Sovereign Debt

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