Memory in Contracts: The Experience of the EBRD (1991-2003)
The objective of this paper is to identify the role of memory as a screening device in repeated contracts with asymmetric information in financial intermediation. We use an original dataset from the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development. We propose a simple empirical method to capture the role of memory using the client’s reputation. Our results unambiguously isolate the dominant effect of memory on the bank’s lending decisions over market factors in the case of established clients.
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