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Default and Renegotiation: A Dynamic Model of Debt

  • Oliver Hart
  • John Moore

We analyze the role of debt in persuading an entrepreneur to pay out cash flows, rather than to divert them. In the first part of the paper we study the optimal debt contract -- specifically, the trade-off between the size of the loan and the repayment -- under the assumption that some debt contract is optimal. In the second part we consider a more general class of (non-debt) contracts, and derive sufficient conditions for debt to be optimal among these.

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File URL: http://www.nber.org/papers/w5907.pdf
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Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 5907.

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Date of creation: Jan 1997
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Publication status: published as Quarterly Journal of Economics, Vol. 113, no. 1 (1998): 1-41.
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:5907
Note: CF
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  1. Bulow, Jeremy & Rogoff, Kenneth S., 1989. "A Constant Recontracting Model of Sovereign Debt," Scholarly Articles 12491028, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  2. Harris, Milton & Raviv, Artur, 1995. "The Role of Games in Security Design," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 8(2), pages 327-67.
  3. Maskin, Eric & Moore, John, 1999. "Implementation and Renegotiation," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 66(1), pages 39-56, January.
  4. Oliver Hart & John Moore, 1997. "Default and Renegotiation: A Dynamic Model of Debt," NBER Working Papers 5907, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Gale, Douglas & Hellwig, Martin, 1985. "Incentive-Compatible Debt Contracts: The One-Period Problem," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 52(4), pages 647-63, October.
  6. Paul Milgrom & Robert J. Weber, 1981. "A Theory of Auctions and Competitive Bidding," Discussion Papers 447R, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
  7. Huberman, Gur & Kahn, Charles M., 1988. "Strategic renegotiation," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 28(2), pages 117-121.
  8. Grossman, Sanford J. & Hart, Oliver D., 1986. "The Costs and Benefits of Ownership: A Theory of Vertical and Lateral Integration," Scholarly Articles 3450060, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  9. Oliver Hart & John Moore, 1991. "A Theory of Debt Based on the Inalienability of Human Capital," NBER Working Papers 3906, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Hart, Oliver & Moore, John, 1990. "Property Rights and the Nature of the Firm," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 98(6), pages 1119-58, December.
  11. Berglof, Erik & von Thadden, Ernst-Ludwig, 1994. "Short-Term versus Long-Term Interests: Capital Structure with Multiple Investors," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 109(4), pages 1055-84, November.
  12. Bolton, Patrick & Scharfstein, David S, 1990. "A Theory of Predation Based on Agency Problems in Financial Contracting," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 80(1), pages 93-106, March.
  13. Gale, Douglas & Hellwig, Martin, 1989. "Repudiation and Renegotiation: The Case of Sovereign Debt," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 30(1), pages 3-31, February.
  14. Bolton, Patrick & Scharfstein, David S, 1996. "Optimal Debt Structure and the Number of Creditors," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 104(1), pages 1-25, February.
  15. Allen, Franklin, 1983. "Credit Rationing and Payment Incentives," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 50(4), pages 639-46, October.
  16. Diamond, Douglas W, 1989. "Reputation Acquisition in Debt Markets," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 97(4), pages 828-62, August.
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