Financial Incentives and Loan Officer Behavior: Multitasking and Allocation of Effort under an Incomplete Contract
Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis,
We investigate the implications of providing loan officers with a nonlinear compensation structure that rewards loan volume and penalizes poor performance. Using a unique data set provided by a large international commercial bank, we examine the main activities that loan officers perform: loan prospecting, screening, and monitoring. We find that when loan officers are at risk of losing their bonuses, they increase prospecting and monitoring. We further show that loan officers adjust their behavior more toward the end of the month when bonus payments are approaching. These effects are more pronounced for loan officers with longer tenures at the bank.
What Drives Discretion in Bank Lending? Some Evidence and a Link to Private Information
Journal of Banking & Finance,
We assess the extent to which discretion, unexplained variations in the terms of a loan contract, has varied across time and lending institutions and show that part of this discretion is due to private information that lenders have on their borrowers. We find that discretion is lower for secured loans and loans granted by a larger group of lenders, and is larger when the lenders are larger and more profitable. Over time, discretion is also lower around recessions although the private information content is higher. The results suggest that bank discretionary and private information acquisition behavior may be important features of the credit cycle.
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The maths behind gut decisions First carefully weigh up the costs and benefits and then make a rational...
Should Banks Diversify or Focus? Know Thyself: The Role of Abilities
The paper investigates whether diversification/focus across assets, industries and borrowers affects bank performance when banks’ abilities (screening and monitoring) are considered. The initial results show that diversification (focus) at the asset, industry and borrower levels is expected to decrease (increase) returns. However, once banks’ screening and monitoring abilities are controlled for, the effect of diversification/focus either gets weaker or disappears. Further, in some cases, these abilities enhance banks’ long-run performance, but in others they prove to be costly, at least, in the short run. Thus, the level of monitoring and screening abilities should be taken into consideration in understanding, planning and implementing diversification/focus strategies.
Enabling the Wisdom of the Crowd: Transparency in Peer-to-Peer Finance
G20 Insights Policy Brief, Policy Area "Financial Resilience",
The rapid growth exhibited by peer-to-peer finance markets raises hopes that especially young ventures might obtain better access to funding. Yet, consumer protection concerns are looming as borrowers and projects requesting finance from the crowd are inherently opaque. We suggest clear rules to enable peer-to-peer lenders and investors to more effectively screen projects. We plea for strengthening self-responsibility of the investor crowd by clearly assigning, and limiting the responsibilities of regulatory authorities and recognizing the regulatory difference between new peer-to-peer, and traditional financial markets. As a result the peer-to-peer market can develop to more effectively complement traditional sources of finance, instead of turning into a funding source for bad investment projects looking to exploit uninformed lenders and investors.
The Productivity Effect of Temporary Agency Work: Evidence from German Panel Data
The Economic Journal,
This study investigates the effect of temporary agency work on the user firm’s productivity. We hypothesise that using temporary agency work to enhance numerical flexibility and to screen job candidates may increase productivity, whereas temporary workers’ lower firm-specific human capital and spillover effects on the user’s permanent employees may adversely affect productivity. Other than the sparse existing literature on this issue, we exploit a large panel data set and control for time-invariant and time-varying unobserved heterogeneity by using the system GMM estimator. We find a robust hump-shaped effect of the extent of temporary agency work on the user firm’s productivity.
Im Fokus: Zeitarbeit im ostdeutschen Verarbeitenden Gewerbe
Wirtschaft im Wandel,
Neben „klassischen“ Beschäftigungsverhältnissen zwischen Arbeitgebern und Arbeitnehmern gewinnen mit Zeitarbeit auch Dreiecksbeziehungen zunehmende Bedeutung am Arbeitsmarkt. Ein Personal-Leasing-Unternehmen
fungiert hier als Intermediär am Arbeitsmarkt und vermietet gewerbsmäßig seine Beschäftigten an andere Unternehmen. Als „Kollegen auf Zeit“ sind sie dann an die Weisungen des entleihenden Unternehmens gebunden und erbringen dort ihre Arbeitsleistung. Zwar umfasste diese Form der Arbeitsorganisation Mitte 2007 sowohl in Ost- als auch in Westdeutschland jeweils erst rund 2% der Erwerbstätigen (bzw. 140 000 Personen in Ostdeutschland einschließlich Berlin), jedoch waren die Zuwachsraten beachtlich: Unter den eine Million zusätzlichen Beschäftigungsverhältnissen, die zwischen 2003 und 2007 in Deutschland entstanden sind, entfielen allein 40% auf das Konto von Zeitarbeit. Unternehmen mit Personalbedarf eröffnet sie die Möglichkeit, ohne aufwendiges Screening von Bewerbern kurzfristige Spitzen in den Auftragseingängen abzuarbeiten, gerade in einem stark regulierten Arbeitsmarkt.