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An information economics perspective on main bank relationships and firm R&D

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  • Hoewer, Daniel
  • Schmidt, Tobias
  • Sofka, Wolfgang

Abstract

Information economics has emerged as the primary theoretical lens for framing financing decisions in firm R&D investment. Successful outcomes of R&D projects are either ex-ante impossible to predict or the information is asymmetrically distributed between inventors and investors. As a result, bank lending for firm R&D has been rare. However, firms can signal the value of their R&D activities and as a result reduce the information deficits that block the availability of external funding. In this study we focus on three types of signals: Firm's existing patent stock, the presences of a joint venture investor and whether the firm has received a government R&D subsidy. We argue theoretically that all of these signals have the potential to alter the risk assessment of the firm's main bank. Additionally, we explore heterogeneities in these risk assessments arising from the industry level and the main bank's portfolio. We test our theoretical predictions for a sample of more than 7,000 firm observations in Germany over a multi-year period. Our theoretical predictions are only supported for firms' past patent activity while other signals fail to alter the risk assessment of a firm's main bank. Besides, we confirm that the risk evaluation is not randomly distributed across bank-firm dyads but depends on industry and bank characteristics.

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  • Hoewer, Daniel & Schmidt, Tobias & Sofka, Wolfgang, 2011. "An information economics perspective on main bank relationships and firm R&D," ZEW Discussion Papers 11-055, ZEW - Leibniz Centre for European Economic Research.
  • Handle: RePEc:zbw:zewdip:11055
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    Cited by:

    1. Ghosh, Saibal, 2016. "Banker on board and innovative activity," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 69(10), pages 4205-4214.
    2. Chiappini, Raphaël & Montmartin, Benjamin & Pommet, Sophie & Demaria, Samira, 2022. "Can direct innovation subsidies relax SMEs’ financial constraints?," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 51(5).
    3. Annalisa Ferrando & Alexander Popov & Gregory F. Udell, 2019. "Do SMEs Benefit from Unconventional Monetary Policy and How? Microevidence from the Eurozone," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 51(4), pages 895-928, June.
    4. Höwer, Daniel, 2013. "Corporate main bank decision," ZEW Discussion Papers 13-018, ZEW - Leibniz Centre for European Economic Research.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Innovation; banking; information asymmetry;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • O32 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Management of Technological Innovation and R&D
    • D82 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Asymmetric and Private Information; Mechanism Design
    • G30 - Financial Economics - - Corporate Finance and Governance - - - General

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