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Do Distressed Banks Really Gamble for Resurrection?

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  • Itzhak Ben-David
  • Ajay A. Palvia
  • René M. Stulz

Abstract

We explore the actions of financially distressed banks in two distinct periods that include financial crises (1985-1994, 2005-2014) and differ in bank regulations, especially concerning capital requirements and enforcement. In contrast to the widespread belief that distressed banks gamble for resurrection, we document that distressed banks take actions to reduce leverage and risk, such as reducing asset and loan growth, issuing equity, decreasing dividends, and lowering deposit rates. Despite large differences in regulation between periods, the extent of deleveraging is similar, suggesting that economic forces beyond formal regulations incentivize bank managers to deleverage when their banks are in distress.

Suggested Citation

  • Itzhak Ben-David & Ajay A. Palvia & René M. Stulz, 2019. "Do Distressed Banks Really Gamble for Resurrection?," NBER Working Papers 25794, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:25794
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    Cited by:

    1. Frey, Rainer & Weth, Mark, 2019. "Banks' holdings of risky sovereign bonds in the absence of the nexus: Yield seeking with central bank funding or de-risking?," Discussion Papers 19/2019, Deutsche Bundesbank.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • G11 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Portfolio Choice; Investment Decisions
    • G21 - Financial Economics - - Financial Institutions and Services - - - Banks; Other Depository Institutions; Micro Finance Institutions; Mortgages
    • G33 - Financial Economics - - Corporate Finance and Governance - - - Bankruptcy; Liquidation

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