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Precautionary corporate liquidity

  • Kaiji Chen
  • Zheng Song
  • Yikai Wang

We develop a theory of corporate liquidity demand, capturing the fact that a firm's borrowing capacity depends on news on future investment profitability. In our model, bad news on future investment profitability reduces a firm's borrowing capacity and therefore increases the need for internal finance. Consequently, the firm's cash savings respond negatively to news on future profitability. This negative correlation is strongly supported by our empirical evidence using a combined data set of Compustat and IBES. Moreover, both our simulation and empirical results show that the sensitivity of cash savings to news on future profitability is a reliable indicator of the presence of financial constraints at firm level.

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Paper provided by Institute for Empirical Research in Economics - University of Zurich in its series IEW - Working Papers with number 465.

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Date of creation: Jan 2010
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:zur:iewwpx:465
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  1. Heitor Almeida & Murillo Campello & Michael S. Weisbach, 2004. "The Cash Flow Sensitivity of Cash," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 59(4), pages 1777-1804, 08.
  2. Vlieghe, Gertjan & Stephen Bond & Alexander Klemm & Rain Newton-Smith & Murtaza Syed, 2003. "The roles of expected profitability, Tobin's Q and cash flow in econometric models of company investment," Royal Economic Society Annual Conference 2003 212, Royal Economic Society.
  3. Christopher A. Hennessy & Toni M. Whited, 2007. "How Costly Is External Financing? Evidence from a Structural Estimation," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 62(4), pages 1705-1745, 08.
  4. Oliver Hart & John Moore, 1997. "Default and Renegotiation: A Dynamic Model of Debt," Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers 1792, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
  5. Jason G. Cummins & Kevin A. Hassett & Stephen D. Oliner, 1999. "Investment behavior, observable expectations, and internal funds," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 1999-27, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  6. Tim Opler & Lee Pinkowitz & Rene Stulz & Rohan Williamson, 1997. "The Determinants and Implications of Corporate Cash Holdings," NBER Working Papers 6234, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Urban Jermann & Vincenzo Quadrini, 2007. "Financial Innovations and Macroeconomic Volatility," 2007 Meeting Papers 50, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  8. Timothy Erickson & Toni M. Whited, 2000. "Measurement Error and the Relationship between Investment and q," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 108(5), pages 1027-1057, October.
  9. Leigh A. Riddick & Toni M. Whited, 2009. "The Corporate Propensity to Save," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 64(4), pages 1729-1766, 08.
  10. Steve Bond & Jason Cummins, 2001. "Noisy share prices and the Q model of investment," IFS Working Papers W01/22, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
  11. Kaplan, Steven N & Zingales, Luigi, 1997. "Do Investment-Cash Flow Sensitivities Provide Useful Measures of Financing Constraints," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 112(1), pages 169-215, February.
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