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Borrowers under water! Rare disasters, regional banks, and recovery lending

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  • Koetter, Michael
  • Noth, Felix
  • Rehbein, Oliver

Abstract

We test if and how banks adjust their lending in response to disaster risk in the form of a natural catastrophe striking its customers: the 2013 Elbe flooding. The flood affected firms in East and South Germany, and we identify shocked banks based on bank-firm relationships gathered for more than a million firms. Banks with relationships to flooded firms lend 13-23% more than banks without such customers compared to the preflooding period. This lending hike is associated with higher protability and reduced risk. Our results suggest that local banks are an effective mechanism to mitigate rare disaster shocks faced especially by small and medium firms.

Suggested Citation

  • Koetter, Michael & Noth, Felix & Rehbein, Oliver, 2016. "Borrowers under water! Rare disasters, regional banks, and recovery lending," IWH Discussion Papers 31/2016, Halle Institute for Economic Research (IWH).
  • Handle: RePEc:zbw:iwhdps:312016
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    Cited by:

    1. Noth, Felix & Schüwer, Ulrich, 2017. "Natural disasters and bank stability: Evidence from the U.S. financial system," Annual Conference 2017 (Vienna): Alternative Structures for Money and Banking 168263, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
    2. Noth, Felix & Schüwer, Ulrich, 2017. "Natural disaster and bank stability: Evidence from the U.S. financial system," SAFE Working Paper Series 167, Research Center SAFE - Sustainable Architecture for Finance in Europe, Goethe University Frankfurt.
    3. Rehbein, Oliver, 2018. "Flooded through the back door: Firm-level effects of banks' lending shifts," IWH Discussion Papers 4/2018, Halle Institute for Economic Research (IWH).
    4. Noth, Felix & Rehbein, Oliver, 2017. "Badly hurt? Natural disasters and direct firm effects," IWH Discussion Papers 25/2017, Halle Institute for Economic Research (IWH).

    More about this item

    Keywords

    disaster risk; credit demand; natural disaster; relationship lenders;

    JEL classification:

    • G21 - Financial Economics - - Financial Institutions and Services - - - Banks; Other Depository Institutions; Micro Finance Institutions; Mortgages
    • G29 - Financial Economics - - Financial Institutions and Services - - - Other
    • O16 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Financial Markets; Saving and Capital Investment; Corporate Finance and Governance
    • Q54 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Climate; Natural Disasters and their Management; Global Warming

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