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Legal origin, creditor protection and bank lending: Evidence from emerging markets

  • Cole, Rebel
  • Turk, Rima

Numerous papers in the “law and finance” literature have established that countries with better functioning legal institutions enjoy better developed capital markets, and that legal origin is a fundamental determinant of legal institutions (La Porta et al. 1997, 1998, 2006; Djankov et al. 2007). In this study, we test whether banks are willing to grant more credit to the private sector when they enjoy superior legal protection. We test this hypothesis using bank-level data from 45 emerging-market countries and a random-effects model that controls for bank heterogeneity. We find that lenders allocate a significantly higher portion of their assets to loans (i) where they enjoy English legal origin rather than French or Socialist legal origin; (ii) where enforcement of debt contracts is more efficient and (iii) where banks enjoy fewer restrictions on their operations. These support our hypothesis that superior legal protection leads to more bank credit, which, in turn, should lead to higher economic growth.

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Paper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 4713.

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Date of creation: 30 May 2007
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Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:4713
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  1. Rafael LaPorta & Florencio Lopez de-Silanes & Andrei Shleifer & Robert W. Vishny, 1996. "Law and Finance," Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers 1768, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
    • Rafael LaPorta & Florencio Lopez-de-Silanes & Andrei Shleifer & Robert W. Vishny, . "Law and Finance," Working Paper 19451, Harvard University OpenScholar.
    • La Porta, Rafael & Lopez-de-Silanes, Florencio & Shleifer, Andrei & Vishny, Robert W., 1998. "Law and Finance," Scholarly Articles 3451310, Harvard University Department of Economics.
    • Rafael La Porta & Florencio Lopez-de-Silane & Andrei Shleifer & Robert W. Vishny, 1996. "Law and Finance," NBER Working Papers 5661, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Thorsten Beck & Asli Demirguc-Kunt & Ross Levine, 2002. "Law, Endowment, and Finance," NBER Working Papers 9089, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Aghion, P. & Hart, O. & Moore, J., 1992. "The Economics of Bankruptcy Reform," Working papers 92-11, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
  4. Rafael La Porta & Florencio Lopez-de-Silane & Andrei Shleifer & Robert W. Vishny, 1997. "Legal Determinants of External Finance," NBER Working Papers 5879, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Edward Glaeser & Simon Johnson & Andrei Shleifer, 2001. "Coase Versus The Coasians," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 116(3), pages 853-899, August.
  6. Rafael La Porta & Florencio Lopez-de-Silanes & Andrei Shleifer & Robert Vishny, 1999. "Investor Protection and Corporate Valuation," Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers 1882, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
  7. Beaudry, Paul & Portier, Franck, 2004. "When Can Changes in Expectations Cause Business Cycle Fluctuations in Neo-Classical Settings?," CEPR Discussion Papers 4628, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  8. Oliver Hart & John Moore, 1997. "Default and Renegotiation: A Dynamic Model of Debt," NBER Working Papers 5907, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. King, Robert G. & Levine, Ross, 1993. "Finance and growth : Schumpeter might be right," Policy Research Working Paper Series 1083, The World Bank.
  10. Jun Qian & Philip E. Strahan, 2007. "How Laws and Institutions Shape Financial Contracts: The Case of Bank Loans," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 62(6), pages 2803-2834, December.
  11. Simeon Djankov & Caralee McLiesh & Andrei Shleifer, 2005. "Private Credit in 129 Countries," NBER Working Papers 11078, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  12. Beck, Thorsten & Demirguc-Kunt, Asli & Levine, Ross, 2002. "Law and finance : why does legal origin matter?," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2904, The World Bank.
  13. 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.
  14. Beck, Thorsten & Levine, Ross & Loayza, Norman, 2000. "Finance and the sources of growth," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 58(1-2), pages 261-300.
  15. King, Robert G. & Levine, Ross, 1993. "Finance and growth : Schumpeter might be right," Policy Research Working Paper Series 1083, The World Bank.
  16. Demirguc-Kunt, Asli & Maksimovic, Vojislav, 2002. "Funding growth in bank-based and market-based financial systems: evidence from firm-level data," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 65(3), pages 337-363, September.
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