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Market implied costs of bankruptcy

  • Reindl, Johann
  • Stoughton, Neal
  • Zechner, Josef

This paper takes a novel approach to estimating bankruptcy costs by inference from market prices of equity and put options using a dynamic structural model of capital structure. This approach avoids the selection bias of looking at firms in or near default and therefore permits theories of ex ante capital structure determination to be tested. We identify significant cross sectional variation in bankruptcy costs across industries and relate these to specific firm characteristics. We find that asset volatility and growth options have significant positive impacts, while tangibility and size have negative impacts. Our bankruptcy cost variable estimate significantly negatively impacts leverage ratios. This negative impact is in addition to that of other firm characteristics such as asset intangibility and asset volatility. The results provide strong support for the tradeoff theory of capital structure.

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File URL: http://econstor.eu/bitstream/10419/88432/1/773913246.pdf
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Paper provided by Center for Financial Studies (CFS) in its series CFS Working Paper Series with number 2013/27.

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Date of creation: 2013
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Handle: RePEc:zbw:cfswop:201327
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  1. Berger, Philip G. & Ofek, Eli & Swary, Itzhak, 1996. "Investor valuation of the abandonment option," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 42(2), pages 257-287, October.
  2. Ericsson, Jan & Reneby, Joel, 1996. "Stock Options as Barrier Contingent Claims," SSE/EFI Working Paper Series in Economics and Finance 137, Stockholm School of Economics, revised 01 Feb 2002.
  3. Jonathan B. Berk & Richard Stanton & Josef Zechner, 2010. "Human Capital, Bankruptcy, and Capital Structure," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 65(3), pages 891-926, 06.
  4. Weiss, Lawrence A., 1990. "Bankruptcy resolution: Direct costs and violation of priority of claims," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 27(2), pages 285-314, October.
  5. Jan Ericsson, 2005. "Estimating Structural Bond Pricing Models," The Journal of Business, University of Chicago Press, vol. 78(2), pages 707-735, March.
  6. Arturo Bris & Ivo Welch & Ning Zhu, 2006. "The Costs of Bankruptcy: Chapter 7 Liquidation versus Chapter 11 Reorganization," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 61(3), pages 1253-1303, 06.
  7. Hayne E. Leland and Klaus Bjerre Toft., 1995. "Optimal Capital Structure, Endogenous Bankruptcy, and the Term Structure of Credit Spreads," Research Program in Finance Working Papers RPF-259, University of California at Berkeley.
  8. Elkamhi, Redouane & Ericsson, Jan & Parsons, Christopher A., 2012. "The cost and timing of financial distress," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 105(1), pages 62-81.
  9. Altman, Edward I, 1984. " A Further Empirical Investigation of the Bankruptcy Cost Question," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 39(4), pages 1067-89, September.
  10. Hayne E. Leland., 1998. "Agency Costs, Risk Management, and Capital Structure," Research Program in Finance Working Papers RPF-278, University of California at Berkeley.
  11. Gregor Andrade & Steven N. Kaplan, 1998. "How Costly is Financial (Not Economic) Distress? Evidence from Highly Leveraged Transactions that Became Distressed," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 53(5), pages 1443-1493, October.
  12. Peter Carr & Liuren Wu, 2010. "Stock Options and Credit Default Swaps: A Joint Framework for Valuation and Estimation," Journal of Financial Econometrics, Society for Financial Econometrics, vol. 8(4), pages 409-449, Fall.
  13. Jin-Chuan Duan, 1994. "Maximum Likelihood Estimation Using Price Data Of The Derivative Contract," Mathematical Finance, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 4(2), pages 155-167.
  14. Heitor Almeida & Murillo Campello, 2007. "Financial Constraints, Asset Tangibility, and Corporate Investment," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 20(5), pages 1429-1460, 2007 12.
  15. Murray Z. Frank & Vidhan K. Goyal, 2009. "Capital Structure Decisions: Which Factors Are Reliably Important?," Financial Management, Financial Management Association International, vol. 38(1), pages 1-37, 03.
  16. Sergei A. Davydenko & Ilya A. Strebulaev & Xiaofei Zhao, 2012. "A Market-Based Study of the Cost of Default," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 25(10), pages 2959-2999.
  17. Heitor Almeida & Thomas Philippon, 2005. "The Risk-Adjusted Cost of Financial Distress," NBER Working Papers 11685, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  18. Jan Ericsson & Joel Reneby, 1998. "A framework for valuing corporate securities," Applied Mathematical Finance, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 5(3-4), pages 143-163.
  19. Eugene F. Fama, 2002. "Testing Trade-Off and Pecking Order Predictions About Dividends and Debt," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 15(1), pages 1-33, March.
  20. Ang, James S & Chua, Jess H & McConnell, John J, 1982. " The Administrative Costs of Corporate Bankruptcy: A Note," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 37(1), pages 219-26, March.
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