Corporate Governance Benefits of Mutual Fund Cooperation
IWH Discussion Papers,
Mutual fund families increasingly hold bonds and stocks from the same firm. We study the implications of such dual holdings for corporate governance and firm decision-making. We present evidence that dual ownership allows financially distressed firms to increase investments and to refinance by issuing bonds with lower yields and fewer restrictive covenants. As such, dual ownership reduces shareholder-creditor conflicts, especially when families encourage cooperation among their managers. Overall, our results suggest that mutual fund families internalize the shareholder-creditor agency conflicts of their portfolio companies, highlighting the positive governance externalities of intra-family cooperation.
Banks Response to Higher Capital Requirements: Evidence from a Quasi-natural Experiment
Review of Financial Studies,
We study the impact of higher capital requirements on banks’ balance sheets and their transmission to the real economy. The 2011 EBA capital exercise is an almost ideal quasi-natural experiment to identify this impact with a difference-in-differences matching estimator. We find that treated banks increase their capital ratios by reducing their risk-weighted assets, not by raising their levels of equity, consistent with debt overhang. Banks reduce lending to corporate and retail customers, resulting in lower asset, investment, and sales growth for firms obtaining a larger share of their bank credit from the treated banks.
Do We Want These Two to Tango? On Zombie Firms and Stressed Banks in Europe
IWH Discussion Papers,
We show that the speed and type of corporate deleveraging depends on the interaction between corporate and financial sector health. Based on granular bank-firm data pertaining to small and medium-sized enterprises (SME) from five stressed and two non-stressed euro area economies, we show that “zombie” firms generally continued to lever up during the 2010–2014 period. Whereas relationships with stressed banks reduce SME leverage on average, we also show that zombie firms that are tied to weak banks in euro area periphery countries increase their indebtedness even further. Sustainable economic recovery therefore requires both: deleveraging of banks and firms.
Government Interventions in Banking Crises: Effects of Alternative Schemes on Bank Lending and Risk-taking
Scottish Journal of Political Economy,
We analyse the effects of policy measures to stop the fall in loan supply following a banking crisis. We apply a dynamic framework in which a debt overhang induces banks to curtail lending or to choose a fragile capital structure. Government assistance conditional on new banking activities, like on new lending or on debt and equity issues, allows banks to influence the scale of the assistance and to externalise risks, implying overinvestment or excessive risk taking or both. Assistance without reference to new activities, like granting lump sum transfers or establishing bad banks, does not generate adverse incentives but may have higher fiscal costs.