IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/nbr/nberwo/4800.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Leverage as a State Variable for Employment, Inventory Accumulation, andFixed Investment

Author

Listed:
  • Charles W. Calomiris
  • Athanasios Orphanides
  • Steven A. Sharpe

Abstract

The importance of a firm's balance sheet for determining its investment and employment decisions is the central assumption of macroeconomic models of 'debt deflation' or 'debt overhang.' According to these models, firm investment decisions are influenced not only by the fundamental opportunity set of the firm, but also by the firm's existing financial condition, especially its leverage. This paper tests that assumption by examining whether the responsiveness of employment, investment, and inventory accumulation to exogenous changes in sales depend on the leverage of the firm. We find that leverage acts as an important state variable for conditioning the response of all three variables to changes in sales. We also find that this effect varies depending on the state of the economy. During recessions, higher leverage magnifies the contractionary effect of declines in sales on investment; during times of positive sales growth, higher leverage tends to dampen the expansionary effect of growth in demand. The size and significance of leverage conditioning effects are larger during recessions. These results support theoretical models of the potential importance of 'debt overhang' effects. Firms that use debt to finance expansion during times of increasing demand suffer reduced ability to maintain growth during recessions as a consequence of their higher leverage.

Suggested Citation

  • Charles W. Calomiris & Athanasios Orphanides & Steven A. Sharpe, 1994. "Leverage as a State Variable for Employment, Inventory Accumulation, andFixed Investment," NBER Working Papers 4800, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:4800
    Note: CF
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.nber.org/papers/w4800.pdf
    Download Restriction: no
    ---><---

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Mark M. Howrey & Richard W. Kopcke, 1994. "A panel study of investment: sales, cash flow, the cost of capital, and leverage," New England Economic Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Boston, issue Jan, pages 9-30.
    2. Stewart C. Myers & Nicholas S. Majluf, 1984. "Corporate Financing and Investment Decisions When Firms Have InformationThat Investors Do Not Have," NBER Working Papers 1396, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    3. Myers, Stewart C. & Majluf, Nicholas S., 1984. "Corporate financing and investment decisions when firms have information that investors do not have," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 13(2), pages 187-221, June.
    4. Shleifer, Andrei & Vishny, Robert W, 1992. "Liquidation Values and Debt Capacity: A Market Equilibrium Approach," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 47(4), pages 1343-1366, September.
    5. Mark Gertler & Simon Gilchrist, 1994. "Monetary Policy, Business Cycles, and the Behavior of Small Manufacturing Firms," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 109(2), pages 309-340.
    6. Bronwyn H. Hall & Clint Cumminq & Elizabeth S. Laderman & Joy Mundy, 1988. "The R&D Master File Documentation," NBER Technical Working Papers 0072, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    7. Calomiris, Charles W & Hubbard, R Glenn, 1990. "Firm Heterogeneity, Internal Finance, and 'Credit Rationing.'," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 100(399), pages 90-104, March.
    8. Richard Cantor, 1990. "Effects of leverage on corporate investment and hiring decisions," Quarterly Review, Federal Reserve Bank of New York, vol. 15(Sum), pages 31-41.
    9. Jensen, Michael C. & Meckling, William H., 1976. "Theory of the firm: Managerial behavior, agency costs and ownership structure," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 3(4), pages 305-360, October.
    10. Charles W. Calomiris & R. Glenn Hubbard & James H. Stock, 1986. "The Farm Debt Crisis and Public Policy," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 17(2), pages 441-486.
    11. Charles W. Calomiris & Gary Gorton, 1991. "The Origins of Banking Panics: Models, Facts, and Bank Regulation," NBER Chapters, in: Financial Markets and Financial Crises, pages 109-174, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    12. Paul Asquith & Robert Gertner & David Scharfstein, 1994. "Anatomy of Financial Distress: An Examination of Junk-Bond Issuers," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 109(3), pages 625-658.
    13. Jensen, Michael C, 1986. "Agency Costs of Free Cash Flow, Corporate Finance, and Takeovers," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 76(2), pages 323-329, May.
    14. Calomiris, Charles W. & Himmelberg, Charles P. & Wachtel, Paul, 1995. "Commercial paper, corporate finance, and the business cycle: a microeconomic perspective," Carnegie-Rochester Conference Series on Public Policy, Elsevier, vol. 42(1), pages 203-250, June.
    15. Steven M. Fazzari & R. Glenn Hubbard & Bruce C. Petersen, 1988. "Financing Constraints and Corporate Investment," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 19(1), pages 141-206.
    16. Murphy, Kevin M & Shleifer, Andrei & Vishny, Robert W, 1989. "Industrialization and the Big Push," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 97(5), pages 1003-1026, October.
    17. Richard F. Syron, 1991. "Are we experiencing a credit crunch?," New England Economic Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Boston, issue Jul, pages 3-10.
    18. Bernanke, Ben S, 1983. "Nonmonetary Effects of the Financial Crisis in Propagation of the Great Depression," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 73(3), pages 257-276, June.
    19. Charles W. Calomiris, 1994. "Is the discount window necessary? a Penn Central perspective," Review, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, issue May, pages 31-55.
    20. Charles W. Calomiris & R. Glenn Hubbard, 1989. "Price Flexibility, Credit Availability, and Economic Fluctuations: Evidence from the United States, 1894–1909," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 104(3), pages 429-452.
    21. Hayashi, Fumio, 1982. "Tobin's Marginal q and Average q: A Neoclassical Interpretation," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 50(1), pages 213-224, January.
    22. Ben S. Bernanke & John Y. Campbell, 1988. "Is There a Corporate Debt Crisis?," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 19(1), pages 83-140.
    23. Ben Bemanke & Harold James, 1991. "The Gold Standard, Deflation, and Financial Crisis in the Great Depression: An International Comparison," NBER Chapters, in: Financial Markets and Financial Crises, pages 33-68, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    24. Mark Gertler & R. Glenn Hubbard, 1990. "Taxation, Corporate Capital Structure, and Financial Distress," NBER Chapters, in: Tax Policy and the Economy: Volume 4, pages 43-72, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    25. Mishkin, Frederic S, 1976. "Illiquidity, Consumer Durable Expenditure, and Monetary Policy," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 66(4), pages 642-654, September.
    26. Hubbard, R Glenn & Kashyap, Anil K, 1992. "Internal Net Worth and the Investment Process: An Application to U.S. Agriculture," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 100(3), pages 506-534, June.
    27. Eichengreen, Barry & Sachs, Jeffrey, 1986. "Competitive devaluation and the Great Depression : A theoretical reassessment," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 22(1), pages 67-71.
    28. Hunter, Helen Manning, 1982. "The Role of Business Liquidity During the Great Depression and Afterwards: Differences Between Large and Small Firms," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 42(4), pages 883-902, December.
    29. Myers, Stewart C. & Majluf, Nicolás S., 1945-, 1984. "Corporate financing and investment decisions when firms have information that investors do not have," Working papers 1523-84., Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Sloan School of Management.
    30. Sharpe, Steven A, 1994. "Financial Market Imperfections, Firm Leverage, and the Cyclicality of Employment," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 84(4), pages 1060-1074, September.
    31. Mishkin, Frederic S., 1978. "The Household Balance Sheet and the Great Depression," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 38(4), pages 918-937, December.
    32. Ben S. Bernanke, 1993. "Credit in the macroeconomy," Quarterly Review, Federal Reserve Bank of New York, vol. 18(Spr), pages 50-70.
    33. Peter Temin, 1991. "Lessons from the Great Depression," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262700441.
    34. Joe Peek & Eric S. Rosengren, 1992. "The capital crunch in New England," New England Economic Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Boston, issue May, pages 21-31.
    35. Robert E. Carpenter & Steven M. Fazzari & Bruce C. Petersen, 1994. "Inventory (Dis)Investment, Internal Finance Fluctuations, and the Business Cycle," Macroeconomics 9401001, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    36. 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.
    37. George L. Perry & Charles L. Schultze, 1993. "Was This Recession Different? Are They All Different?," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 24(1), pages 145-212.
    38. Charles W. Calomiris, 1993. "Financial Factors in the Great Depression," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 7(2), pages 61-85, Spring.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. Spaliara, Marina-Eliza, 2009. "Do financial factors affect the capital-labour ratio? Evidence from UK firm-level data," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 33(10), pages 1932-1947, October.
    2. Heisz, Andrew & Larochelle-Cote, Sebastien, 2004. "Corporate Financial Leverage in Canadian Manufacturing: Consequences for Employment and Inventories," Analytical Studies Branch Research Paper Series 2004217e, Statistics Canada, Analytical Studies Branch.
    3. Kazuo Ogawa, 2004. "Debt, R&D Investment and Technological Progress: A Panel Study of Japanese Manufacturing Firms in the 90s," ISER Discussion Paper 0607, Institute of Social and Economic Research, Osaka University.
    4. Größl Ingrid & Stahlecker Peter & Wohlers Eckhardt, 2001. "An Empirical Investigation of German Firms’ Financial Structure and Ensuing Risks / Finanzierungsstruktur und Risiken im Unternehmenssektor der Bundesrepublik Deutschland. Eine empirische Bestandsaufn," Journal of Economics and Statistics (Jahrbuecher fuer Nationaloekonomie und Statistik), De Gruyter, vol. 221(5-6), pages 491-529, October.
    5. Simon Gilchrist & Charles Himmelberg, 1999. "Investment: Fundamentals and Finance," NBER Chapters, in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 1998, volume 13, pages 223-274, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    6. Gregor Bäurle & Sarah M. Lein & Elizabeth Steiner, 2017. "Employment Adjustment and Financial Constraints - Evidence from Firm-level Data," Working Papers 2017-18, Swiss National Bank.
    7. Vermeulen, Philip, 2002. " Business Fixed Investment: Evidence of a Financial Accelerator in Europe," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 64(3), pages 217-235, July.
    8. Felix J. Lopez Iturriaga, 2000. "More on the credit channel of monetary policy transmission: an international comparison," Applied Financial Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 10(4), pages 423-434.
    9. Konstantinos Drakos & Christos Kallandranis, 2006. "Modelling Labour Demand Dynamics beyond the Frictionless Environment," LABOUR, CEIS, vol. 20(4), pages 699-720, December.
    10. Tobias Miarka & Michael Troge, 2005. "Do bank-firm relationships reduce bank debt? Evidence from Japan," The European Journal of Finance, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 11(1), pages 75-92.
    11. Anna Bottasso, 1996. "Firms’ Financial Structure And Real Decisions: A Critical Survey Of The Empirical Literature," CERIS Working Paper 199623, Institute for Economic Research on Firms and Growth - Moncalieri (TO) ITALY -NOW- Research Institute on Sustainable Economic Growth - Moncalieri (TO) ITALY.
    12. Zyblock, Miles, 1997. "L'effet de levier financier des entreprises : une comparaison entre le Canada et les E.-U., 1961-1996," Direction des études analytiques : documents de recherche 1997111f, Statistics Canada, Direction des études analytiques.
    13. Kazuo Ogawa, 2003. "Financial Distress and Employment: The Japanese Case in the 90s," NBER Working Papers 9646, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    14. Ricardo N. Bebczuk, 2000. "Financiamiento empresario, desarrollo financiero y crecimiento," Premio de Banca Central Rodrigo Gómez / Central Banking Award "Rodrigo Gómez", Centro de Estudios Monetarios Latinoamericanos, CEMLA, number prg2000, July-Dece.
    15. Calomiris, Charles W. & Love, Inessa & Martínez Pería, María Soledad, 2012. "Stock returns’ sensitivities to crisis shocks: Evidence from developed and emerging markets," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 31(4), pages 743-765.
    16. Zyblock, Miles, 1997. "Corporate Financial Leverage: A Canada - U.S. Comparison, 1961-1996," Analytical Studies Branch Research Paper Series 1997111e, Statistics Canada, Analytical Studies Branch.
    17. Wohlers, Eckhardt & Größl, Ingrid & Stahlecker, Peter, 1999. "Finanzierungsstruktur und Risiken im Unternehmenssektor der Bundesrepublik Deutschland: Eine empirische Bestandsaufnahme," HWWA Discussion Papers 83, Hamburg Institute of International Economics (HWWA).
    18. Charles W. Calomiris & Inessa Love & Maria Soledad Martinez Peria, 2010. "Crisis "Shock Factors" and the Cross-Section of Global Equity Returns," NBER Working Papers 16559, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    19. Egon Zakrajšek, 1997. "Retail inventories, internal finance, and aggregate fluctuations," Research Paper 9722, Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
    20. Philip Vermeulen, 2002. "Business fixed investment: evidence of a financial accelerator in Europe," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 64(3), pages 213-231, July.
    21. Efraim Benmelech & Nittai K. Bergman & Amit Seru, 2011. "Financing Labor," NBER Working Papers 17144, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    22. Kazuo Ogawa, 2003. "Financial Distress and Corporate Investment: The Japanese Case in the 90s," ISER Discussion Paper 0584, Institute of Social and Economic Research, Osaka University.
    23. Ricardo N. Bebczuk, 2000. "Corporate Finance, Financial Development, and Growth," Premio de Banca Central Rodrigo Gómez / Central Banking Award "Rodrigo Gómez", Centro de Estudios Monetarios Latinoamericanos, CEMLA, number prg2000eng, July-Dece.

    Most related items

    These are the items that most often cite the same works as this one and are cited by the same works as this one.
    1. R. Glenn Hubbard, 1998. "Capital-Market Imperfections and Investment," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 36(1), pages 193-225, March.
    2. Stijn Claessens & M Ayhan Kose, 2018. "Frontiers of macrofinancial linkages," BIS Papers, Bank for International Settlements, number 95, June.
    3. Robert E. Carpenter & Steven M. Fazzari & Bruce C. Petersen, 1994. "Inventory Investment, Internal-Finance Fluctuation, and the Business Cycle," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 25(2), pages 75-138.
    4. Simon Gilchrist & Charles Himmelberg, 1999. "Investment: Fundamentals and Finance," NBER Chapters, in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 1998, volume 13, pages 223-274, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    5. Opler, Tim & Pinkowitz, Lee & Stulz, Rene & Williamson, Rohan, 1999. "The determinants and implications of corporate cash holdings," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 52(1), pages 3-46, April.
    6. Mark Gertler & R. Glenn Hubbard & Anil Kashyap, 1991. "Interest Rate Spreads, Credit Constraints, and Investment Fluctuations: An Empirical Investigation," NBER Chapters, in: Financial Markets and Financial Crises, pages 11-32, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    7. Bernanke, Ben & Gertler, Mark & Gilchrist, Simon, 1996. "The Financial Accelerator and the Flight to Quality," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 78(1), pages 1-15, February.
    8. Schleicher, Thomas & Tahoun, Ahmed & Walker, Martin, 2010. "IFRS adoption in Europe and investment-cash flow sensitivity: Outsider versus insider economies," The International Journal of Accounting, Elsevier, vol. 45(2), pages 143-168, June.
    9. Harrison, Ann E. & Love, Inessa & McMillan, Margaret S., 2004. "Global capital flows and financing constraints," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 75(1), pages 269-301, October.
    10. Hubbard, R Glenn & Kashyap, Anil K, 1992. "Internal Net Worth and the Investment Process: An Application to U.S. Agriculture," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 100(3), pages 506-534, June.
    11. Yang, Junhong & Guariglia, Alessandra & Guo, Jie (Michael), 2019. "To what extent does corporate liquidity affect M&A decisions, method of payment and performance? Evidence from China," Journal of Corporate Finance, Elsevier, vol. 54(C), pages 128-152.
    12. Hovakimian, Gayané, 2011. "Financial constraints and investment efficiency: Internal capital allocation across the business cycle," Journal of Financial Intermediation, Elsevier, vol. 20(2), pages 264-283, April.
    13. Martinsson, Gustav, 2008. "Firm Collateral and the Cyclicality of Knowledge Intensity," Working Paper Series in Economics and Institutions of Innovation 134, Royal Institute of Technology, CESIS - Centre of Excellence for Science and Innovation Studies.
    14. Z. Jun Lin & Shengqiang Liu & Fangcheng Sun, 2017. "The Impact of Financing Constraints and Agency Costs on Corporate R&D Investment: Evidence from China," International Review of Finance, International Review of Finance Ltd., vol. 17(1), pages 3-42, March.
    15. R. Glenn Hubbard, 1990. "Introduction to "Asymmetric Information, Corporate Finance, and Investment"," NBER Chapters, in: Asymmetric Information, Corporate Finance, and Investment, pages 1-14, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    16. Jean-Bernard Chatelain, 2003. "Structural Modelling of Financial Constraints on Investment: Where Do We Stand?," Post-Print halshs-00112522, HAL.
    17. Charles W. Calomiris & R. Glenn Hubbard, 1993. "Internal Finance and Investment: Evidence from the Undistributed Profits Tax of 1936-1937," NBER Working Papers 4288, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    18. Hellwig, Martin, 2000. "Corporate governance and the financing of investment for structural change," Papers 00-32, Sonderforschungsbreich 504.
    19. Charles W. Calomiris, 1993. "Financial Factors in the Great Depression," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 7(2), pages 61-85, Spring.
    20. Korajczyk, Robert A. & Levy, Amnon, 2003. "Capital structure choice: macroeconomic conditions and financial constraints," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 68(1), pages 75-109, April.

    More about this item

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:4800. 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: . General contact details of provider: https://edirc.repec.org/data/nberrus.html .

    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 CitEc recognized a bibliographic reference but did not link an item in RePEc 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 RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (email available below). General contact details of provider: https://edirc.repec.org/data/nberrus.html .

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.