Commitment or Constraint? The Effect of Loan Covenants on Merger and Acquisition Activity
Finance Research Letters,
We investigate how loan covenants associated with potential target firms affect takeover deals. We propose two possible channels. Under a discipline channel, the target firm becomes an attractive candidate for takeovers and merger deals are facilitated. Under a constraint channel, covenants hinder merger activity. We find support for the latter channel. Takeover likelihood is lower, deal failures are more common, the likelihood of price renegotiation is higher, and acquisition premium is lower when the target is bound by covenants. Covenant tightness exacerbates this effect.
Bank Failures, Local Business Dynamics, and Government Policy
Small Business Economics,
Using MSA-level data over 1994–2014, we study the effect of bank failures on local business dynamics, in the form of net business formation and net job creation. We find that at least one bank failure in the metropolitan statistical area (MSA) with the mean population prevents approximately 475 net businesses from forming in that area, compared with MSAs that experience no bank failures, ceteris paribus. The equivalent effect on net job creation is 16,433 net job losses. Our results are even stronger for small businesses, which are usually more dependent on bank-firm relationships. These effects point to significant welfare losses stemming from bank failures, highlighting an important role for government intervention. We show that the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP) is effective in reducing the negative effects of bank failures on local business dynamics. This positive effect of TARP is quite uniform across small and large firms.
On Modeling IPO Failure Risk
This paper offers a novel framework, combining firm operational risk, IPO pricing risk, and market risk, to model IPO failure risk. By analyzing nearly a thousand variables, we observe that prior IPO failure risk models have suffered from a major missing-variable problem. Evidence reveals several key new firm-level determinants, e.g., the volatility operating performance, the size of its accounts payable, pretax income to common equity, total short-term debt, and a few macroeconomic variables such as treasury bill rate, and book-to-market of the DJIA index. These findings have major economic implications. The total value loss from not predicting the imminent failure of an IPO is significantly lower with this proposed model compared to other established models. The IPO investors could have saved around $18billion over the period between 1994 and 2016 by using this model.
IWH Bankruptcy Research
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Brown Bag Seminar
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The Impact of Delay: Evidence from Formal Out-of-Court Restructuring
IWH Discussion Papers,
Bankruptcy restructuring procedures are used in most legal systems to decide the fate of businesses facing financial hardship. We study how bargaining failures in such procedures impact the economic performance of participating firms in the context of Croatia, which introduced a „pre-bankruptcy settlement“ (PBS) process in the wake of the Great Recession of 2007 - 2009. Local institutions left over from the communist era provide annual financial statements for both sides of more than 180,000 debtor-creditor pairs, enabling us to address selection into failed negotiations by matching a rich set of creditor and debtor characteristics. Failures to settle at the PBS stage due to idiosyncratic bargaining problems, which effectively delays entry into the standard bankruptcy procedure, leads to a lower rate of survival among debtors as well as reduced employment, revenue, and profits. We also track how bargaining failures diffuse through the network of creditors, finding a significant negative effect on small creditors, but not others. Our results highlight the impact of delay and the importance of structuring bankruptcy procedures to rapidly resolve uncertainty about firms‘ future prospects.
“The Good News about Bad News”: Information about Past Organizational Failure and Its Impact on Worker Productivity
Failure in organizations is very common. Little is known about whether leaders should provide information about past organizational failure to followers and how this might affect their future performance. We conducted a field experiment in which we recruited temporary workers to carry out a phone campaign to attract new volunteers and randomly assigned them to either receive or not to receive information about a failed mail campaign pursuing the same goal. We find that informed workers performed better, regardless of whether they had previously worked on the failed mail campaign or not. Evidence from a second field experiment with students asked to support voluntarily a campaign for reducing food waste corroborates the finding. We explore the role of leadership tactics behind our findings in a third online survey experiment. We conclude that information about past failure is unlikely to have a negative impact on work performance, and might even lead to performance improvement. Implications for future research on the relevance of leadership tactics when giving such information are discussed.