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Information production in credit relationship: On the role of internal ratings in commercial banking

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  • Brunner, Antje
  • Pieter, Jan
  • Weber, Martin

Abstract

This paper discusses the role of internal corporate ratings as a means by which commercial banks condense their informational advantage and preserve it vis-à-vis a competitive lending market. In drawing on a unique data set collected from leading universal banks in Germany, we are able to evaluate the extent to which non-public information determines corporate ratings. As a point of departure, the paper describes a sample of rating systems currently in use, and points at methodological differences between them. Relying on a probit analysis, we are able to show that the set of qualitative, or soft, factors is not simply redundant with respect to publicly available accounting data. Rather, qualitative information tends to be decisive in at least one third of cases. It tends to improve the firms' overall corporate rating. In the case of conflicting rating changes, i.e. when qualitative and quantitative rating changes have opposing signs, quantitative criteria dominate the overall rating change. Furthermore, the more restrictive the weighting scheme as part of the rating methodology is, the stronger is the impact of qualitative information on the firms' overall rating. The implications of our results underline the need to define stringent rating standards, from both a risk management and a regulatory point of view.

Suggested Citation

  • Brunner, Antje & Pieter, Jan & Weber, Martin, 2000. "Information production in credit relationship: On the role of internal ratings in commercial banking," CFS Working Paper Series 2000/10, Center for Financial Studies (CFS).
  • Handle: RePEc:zbw:cfswop:200010
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Inderst, Roman & Mueller, Holger M., 2007. "A lender-based theory of collateral," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 84(3), pages 826-859, June.
    2. Hans Degryse & Steven Ongena, 2005. "Distance, Lending Relationships, and Competition," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 60(1), pages 231-266, February.
    3. Antje Brunner & Jan Pieter Krahnen, 2013. "Hold-up in multiple banking: evidence from SME lending," International Journal of Banking, Accounting and Finance, Inderscience Enterprises Ltd, vol. 5(1/2), pages 78-101.
    4. Roman Inderst & Holger M. Mueller, 2006. "Informed Lending and Security Design," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 61(5), pages 2137-2162, October.
    5. Florez-Lopez, Raquel, 2007. "Modelling of insurers' rating determinants. An application of machine learning techniques and statistical models," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 183(3), pages 1488-1512, December.
    6. Rym Ayadi & Beat Bernet & Simone Westerfeld & Tom Franck & Nancy Huyghebaert & Vítor Gaspar & Simona Bovha-Padilla & Reinhilde Veugelers, 2009. "Financing of SMEs in Europe," Chapters in SUERF Studies, SUERF - The European Money and Finance Forum.
    7. Van Laere, Elisabeth & Baesens, Bart, 2010. "The development of a simple and intuitive rating system under Solvency II," Insurance: Mathematics and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 46(3), pages 500-510, June.
    8. Antje Brunner & Jan Pieter Krahnen, 2008. "Multiple Lenders and Corporate Distress: Evidence on Debt Restructuring," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 75(2), pages 415-442.
    9. Liebig, Thilo & Porath, Daniel & di Mauro, Beatrice Weder & Wedow, Michael, 2004. "How will Basel II affect bank lending to emerging markets? An analysis based on German bank level data," Discussion Paper Series 2: Banking and Financial Studies 2004,05, Deutsche Bundesbank.
    10. Grunert, Jens & Norden, Lars & Weber, Martin, 2005. "The role of non-financial factors in internal credit ratings," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 29(2), pages 509-531, February.
    11. Liebig, Thilo & Porath, Daniel & Weder di Mauro, Beatrice & Wedow, Michael, 2005. "Basel II and Bank Lending to Emerging Markets: Micro Evidence from German Banks," CEPR Discussion Papers 5163, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    12. Liebig, Thilo & Porath, Daniel & Weder, Beatrice & Wedow, Michael, 2007. "Basel II and bank lending to emerging markets: Evidence from the German banking sector," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 31(2), pages 401-418, February.
    13. Elsas, Ralf & Krahnen, Jan Pieter, 2000. "Collateral, default risk, and relationship lending: An empirical study on financial contracting," CFS Working Paper Series 1999/13, Center for Financial Studies (CFS).
    14. Simon Cornée, 2012. "The Relevance of Soft Information for Predicting Small Business Credit Default: Evidence from a Social Bank," Economics Working Paper Archive (University of Rennes 1 & University of Caen) 201226, Center for Research in Economics and Management (CREM), University of Rennes 1, University of Caen and CNRS, revised Sep 2015.
    15. Guido Fioretti, 2005. "Credit Rationing and Internal Ratings in the face of Innovation and Uncertainty," Finance 0504021, EconWPA.
    16. Jose Maria Liberti, 2004. "Initiative, Incentives and Soft Information. How Does Delegation Impact The Role of Bank Relationship Managers?," Finance 0404023, EconWPA.
    17. Nataliya Fedorenko & Dorothea Schäfer & Oleksandr Talavera, 2007. "The Effects of the Bank-Internal Ratings on the Loan Maturity," Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin 704, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Corporate rating; long-term lending; financial intermediation; information aggregation; credit risk management;

    JEL classification:

    • G21 - Financial Economics - - Financial Institutions and Services - - - Banks; Other Depository Institutions; Micro Finance Institutions; Mortgages

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