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Relationship Lending and the Great Depression

Author

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  • Jon Cohen
  • Kinda Cheryl Hachem
  • Gary Richardson

Abstract

The collapse of long-term lending relationships amplified the Great Depression. We demonstrate this by developing a new measure of lending relationships that can be calculated from widely available data at any level of aggregation. Our approach exploits differences in the responsiveness of loan rates to bank funding costs and is supported by historical evidence and theoretical arguments. The new measure reveals that the marginal impact of bank suspensions on economic activity was higher in more relationship-intensive areas, providing the first formal evidence that relationship lending propagated the real effects of banking sector distress in the early 1930s.

Suggested Citation

  • Jon Cohen & Kinda Cheryl Hachem & Gary Richardson, 2016. "Relationship Lending and the Great Depression," NBER Working Papers 22891, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:22891
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Guillaume Rocheteau & Tsz-Nga Wong & Cathy Zhang, 2018. "Lending Relationships and Optimal Monetary Policy," Purdue University Economics Working Papers 1306, Purdue University, Department of Economics.
    2. Sutherland, Andrew, 2018. "Does credit reporting lead to a decline in relationship lending? Evidence from information sharing technology," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 66(1), pages 123-141.

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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • E44 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Money and Interest Rates - - - Financial Markets and the Macroeconomy
    • G01 - Financial Economics - - General - - - Financial Crises
    • G21 - Financial Economics - - Financial Institutions and Services - - - Banks; Other Depository Institutions; Micro Finance Institutions; Mortgages
    • L14 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Transactional Relationships; Contracts and Reputation
    • N22 - Economic History - - Financial Markets and Institutions - - - U.S.; Canada: 1913-

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