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A Panel Study of Zombie SMEs in Japan: Identification, Borrowing and Investment Behavior

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  • Kentaro Imai

    (Graduate School of Economics, Osaka University)

Abstract

Using a panel dataset of firms for the period 1999-2008, we estimated the prevalence of zombies among Japanese Small- and Medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and their borrowing and investment behaviors. We observe that 4-14% of SMEs were zombie firms during the period 1999-2008. Analysis of borrowing behavior indicates that zombie firms could not reduce their loans. Reductions in the land values of SMEs did not lead to a decrease in the borrowing of zombie firms due to ever-greening. We also observe that the profitability of investment, measured by marginal q, did not increase investment among zombie firms because evergreen loans increased investment in less productive and profitable projects.

Suggested Citation

  • Kentaro Imai, 2013. "A Panel Study of Zombie SMEs in Japan: Identification, Borrowing and Investment Behavior," Discussion Papers in Economics and Business 13-16-Rev., Osaka University, Graduate School of Economics, revised Sep 2014.
  • Handle: RePEc:osk:wpaper:1316r
    as

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    zombie firms; ever-greening; SMEs; borrowing; investment;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • G21 - Financial Economics - - Financial Institutions and Services - - - Banks; Other Depository Institutions; Micro Finance Institutions; Mortgages
    • E22 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment - - - Investment; Capital; Intangible Capital; Capacity
    • E44 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Money and Interest Rates - - - Financial Markets and the Macroeconomy

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