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Firm Debt Structure and Firm Size

  • James P. Gander
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    The recent macro monetary policy debate over the existence of bank lending channels focuses on short-term bank borrowing versus short-term non-bank borrowing by firms. The approach is macro using aggregate manufacturing corporation data from the QFR of the US Census Bureau. In the present paper, the approach is micro using Compustat corporation data. In the macro approach, the price-substitution effect between bank and non-bank lending is studied to test the existence of a bank lending channel. Pricing (interest rates) data are not available in the micro data. However, the scale effect (Slutsky equation) on term debt structure can be studied. Using regression analysis, covering the period 1995 to 2007 with an unbalanced panel sample of 30,789 observations, the log of the ratio of accounts payable in trade to the long-term debt is regressed on revenue, assets, net income, retained earnings, and dummy variables for industry classifications and monetary conditions. The revenue-size effect was positively related to the debt ratio, assets were negatively related, and retained earnings were positively related. Industry effects and monetary conditions effects varied. The conclusion is that firms can insulate themselves from the effects of monetary policy by relying on trade credit and retained earnings.

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    File URL: http://economics.utah.edu/research/publications/2009_09.pdf
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    Paper provided by University of Utah, Department of Economics in its series Working Paper Series, Department of Economics, University of Utah with number 2009_09.

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    Length: 19 pages
    Date of creation: 2009
    Date of revision:
    Handle: RePEc:uta:papers:2009_09
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    Web page: http://economics.utah.edu

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    1. David Dequech, 2007. "Neoclassical, mainstream, orthodox, and heterodox economics," Journal of Post Keynesian Economics, M.E. Sharpe, Inc., vol. 30(2), pages 279-302, December.
    2. Paul Davidson, 2005. "Responses to Lavoie, King, and Dow on what Post Keynesianism is and who is a Post Keynesian," Journal of Post Keynesian Economics, M.E. Sharpe, Inc., vol. 27(3), pages 393-408, April.
    3. David Colander & Ric Holt & Barkley Rosser, 2003. "The Changing Face of Mainstream Economics," Middlebury College Working Paper Series 0327, Middlebury College, Department of Economics.
    4. Tony Lawson, 1994. "The Nature of Post Keynesianism and Its Links to Other Traditions: A Realist Perspective," Journal of Post Keynesian Economics, M.E. Sharpe, Inc., vol. 16(4), pages 503-538, July.
    5. McCloskey, Donald N, 1983. "The Rhetoric of Economics," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 21(2), pages 481-517, June.
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