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Author:Ongena, Steven 

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Credit, Income and Inequality

Analyzing unique data on loan applications by individuals who are majority owners of small firms, we detail how a bank’s credit decisions affect their future income. We use the bank’s cutoff rule, which is based on the applicants’ credit scores, as the discontinuous locus providing exogenous variation in the decision to grant loans. We show that application acceptance increases recipients’ income five years later by more than 10 percent compared to denied applicants. This effect is mostly driven by the use of borrowed funds to undertake investments, and is stronger when individuals ...
Staff Reports , Paper 929

Conference Paper
Distance and competition

Proceedings , Paper 833

Conference Paper
Firms and their distressed banks: lessons from the Norwegian banking crisis (1988-1991)

Proceedings , Paper 746

Conference Paper
Evidence on the impact of monetary policy on bank credit risk

Proceedings , Paper 1100

Conference Paper
Rules, discretion, and loan rates

Proceedings , Paper 1048

Conference Paper
Bank orientation and industry specialization

How do banks react to increased interbank competition? Recent banking theory offers conflicting predictions about the impact of competition on bank orientation - i.e., the choice of relationship based versus transactional banking - and bank industry specialization. We empirically investigate the impact of interbank competition on bank branch orientation and specialization. We employ a unique data set containing detailed information on bank-firm relationships and industry classification. We find that bank branches facing stiff local competition engage relatively more in relationship-based ...
Proceedings , Paper 943

Working Paper
Firms and their distressed banks: lessons from the Norwegian banking crisis (1988-1991)

We use the near-collapse of the Norwegian banking system during the period 1988-91 to measure the impact of bank distress announcements on the stock prices of firms maintaining a relationship with a distressed bank. We find that although banks experienced large and permanent downward revisions in their equity value during the event period, firms maintaining relationships with these banks faced only small and temporary changes, on average, in stock price. In other words, the aggregate impact of bank distress on listed firms in Norway appears small. Our results stand in contrast to studies that ...
International Finance Discussion Papers , Paper 686

Working Paper
The impact of bank consolidation on commercial borrower welfare

We estimate the impact of bank merger announcements on borrowers' stock prices for publicly traded Norwegian firms. In addition, we analyze how bank mergers influence borrower relationship termination behavior and relate the propensity to terminate to borrower abnormal returns. We obtain four main results. First, on average borrowers lose about 1 percent in equity value when their bank is announced as a merger target. Small borrowers of target banks are especially hurt in mergers between two large banks, where they lose an average of about 3 percent. Small target borrowers are not harmed, and ...
International Finance Discussion Papers , Paper 679

Working Paper
To what extent will the banking industry be globalized? a study of bank nationality and reach in 20 European nations

We model two dimensions of bank globalization -- bank nationality (a bank from the firm's host nation, its home nation, or a third nation) and bank reach (a global, regional, or local bank) -- using a two-stage nested multinomial logit model. Our data set includes over 2,000 foreign affiliates of multinational corporations operating in 20 European nations. We find that these firms frequently use host nation banks for cash management services, and that bank reach may be strongly influenced by this choice of bank nationality. Our results suggest limits to the degree of future bank globalization.
International Finance Discussion Papers , Paper 725

Working Paper
On the sequencing of projects, reputation building, and relationship finance

We study the decision an entrepreneur faces in financing multiple projects and show that relationship financing will arise endogenously in an environment where strategic defaults are likely, even when firms have access to arm's-length financing. Relationship financing allows an entrepreneur to build a private reputation for repayment that reduces the cost of financing. However, in an environment where the risk of strategic default is low, the benefits from reputation building are outweighed by holdup rents extractable by the incumbent lender. Entrepreneurs then choose to finance projects from ...
International Finance Discussion Papers , Paper 718

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