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Inventory Investment in Australia and the Global Financial Crisis

Author

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  • Gianni La Cava

    (Reserve Bank of Australia)

Abstract

A sharp decline in inventory investment was an important contributor to the economic slowdown in Australia in 2008/09. I identify the extent to which this was due to a tightening in short-term credit constraints. In an experimental design setting, I identify the causal effect of short-term credit constraints on inventory investment by exploiting variation in the debt maturity structure of Australian companies just prior to the global financial crisis. I show that the companies that were forced to refinance or repay a relatively large share of debt in 2008/09 reduced inventory investment by significantly more than companies that were due to refinance or repay their debt at some other time. A case study on the Australian motor vehicle industry supports the hypothesis that a decline in the availability of short-term credit significantly hampered corporate investment in inventories in 2008/09.

Suggested Citation

  • Gianni La Cava, 2013. "Inventory Investment in Australia and the Global Financial Crisis," RBA Research Discussion Papers rdp2013-13, Reserve Bank of Australia.
  • Handle: RePEc:rba:rbardp:rdp2013-13
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
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    3. Petersen, Mitchell A & Rajan, Raghuram G, 1997. "Trade Credit: Theories and Evidence," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 10(3), pages 661-691.
    4. Peek, Joe & Rosengren, Eric S & Tootell, Geoffrey M B, 2003. " Identifying the Macroeconomic Effect of Loan Supply Shocks," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 35(6), pages 931-946, December.
    5. Tsoukalas, John D., 2006. "Financing constraints and firm inventory investment: A reexamination," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 90(2), pages 266-271, February.
    6. Alan S. Blinder & Louis J. Maccini, 1991. "Taking Stock: A Critical Assessment of Recent Research on Inventories," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 5(1), pages 73-96, Winter.
    7. Guariglia, Alessandra & Mateut, Simona, 2006. "Credit channel, trade credit channel, and inventory investment: Evidence from a panel of UK firms," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 30(10), pages 2835-2856, October.
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    inventory investment; credit supply; financial crisis;

    JEL classification:

    • C31 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Multiple or Simultaneous Equation Models; Multiple Variables - - - Cross-Sectional Models; Spatial Models; Treatment Effect Models; Quantile Regressions; Social Interaction Models
    • C33 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Multiple or Simultaneous Equation Models; Multiple Variables - - - Models with Panel Data; Spatio-temporal Models
    • D92 - Microeconomics - - Micro-Based Behavioral Economics - - - Intertemporal Firm Choice, Investment, Capacity, and Financing
    • E22 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment - - - Investment; Capital; Intangible Capital; Capacity
    • E32 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - Business Fluctuations; Cycles
    • E51 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit - - - Money Supply; Credit; Money Multipliers
    • G32 - Financial Economics - - Corporate Finance and Governance - - - Financing Policy; Financial Risk and Risk Management; Capital and Ownership Structure; Value of Firms; Goodwill

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