Regulatory Changes and the Cost of Capital for Banks
In response to the financial crisis nearly a decade ago, a number of regulations were passed to improve the safety and soundness of the financial system. In this post and our related staff report, we provide a new perspective on the effect of these regulations by estimating the cost of capital for banks over the past two decades. We find that, while banks? cost of capital soared during the financial crisis, after the passage of the Dodd-Frank Act (DFA), banks experienced a greater decrease in their cost of capital than nonbanks and nonbank financial intermediaries (NBFI).
Credit Market Choice
Credit default swaps (CDS) are frequently credited with being the cause of AIG?s collapse during the financial crisis. A Reuters article from September 2008, for example, notes ?[w]hen you hear that the collapse of AIG [?] might lead to a systemic collapse of the global financial system, the feared culprit is, largely, that once-obscure [?] instrument known as a credit default swap.? Yet, despite the prominent role that CDS played during the financial crisis, little is known about how individual financial institutions utilize CDS contracts on individual companies. In a recent New York Fed ...
Is There Too Much Business Debt?
By many measures, nonfinancial corporate debt has been increasing as a share of GDP and assets since 2010. As the May Federal Reserve Financial Stability Report explained, high business debt can be a financial stability risk because heavily indebted corporations may need to cut back spending more sharply when shocks occur. Our bloggers review measures of corporate leverage in the United States and find that, although corporate debt has soared, concerns about debt growth are mitigated in part by higher corporate cash flows.
Modern-day financial systems are highly complex, with billions of exchanges in information, assets, and funds between individuals and institutions. Though daunting to operationalize, regulating these transmissions may be desirable in some instances. For example, securities regulators aim to protect investors by tracking and punishing insider trading. Recent evidence shows that insiders have formed sophisticated networksthat enable them to pursue activities outside the purview of regulatory oversight. In understanding the cat-and-mouse game between regulators and insiders, a key consideration ...
Self-Fulfilling Debt Crises, Revisited
We revisit self-fulﬁlling rollover crises by exploring the potential uncertainty introduced by a gap in time (however small) between an auction of new debt and the payment of maturing liabilities. It is well known (Cole and Kehoe, 2000) that the lack of commitment at the time of auction to repayment of imminently maturing debt can generate a run on debt, leading to a failed auction and immediate default. We show that the same lack of commitment leads to a rich set of possible self-fulﬁlling crises, including a government that issues more debt because of the crisis, albeit at depressed ...
The impact of unconventional monetary policy on firm financing constraints: evidence from the maturity extension program
This paper investigates the impact of unconventional monetary policy on firm financing constraints. It focuses on the Federal Reserve?s maturity extension program (MEP), which was intended to lower longer-term rates and flatten the yield curve by reducing the supply of long-term government debt. Consistent with those models that emphasize bond market segmentation and limits to arbitrage, around the MEP?s announcement, stock prices rose most sharply for those firms that are more dependent on longer-term debt. These firms also issued more long-term debt during the MEP and expanded employment ...
What Does It Take to List Abroad? The Role of Global Underwriters
This paper examines which firms benefit the most from going public abroad and how a robust IPO market affects the trend toward greater globalization of capital. We show that the decision to do an IPO outside the home country is affected not only by the home country's market characteristics but also the extent to which it is financially integrated with the world economy. In addition, we provide evidence that the decisions of whether to go public abroad, where to list, and the amount of proceeds raised are determined by the presence of global underwriters. Our results suggest that the rise of ...
Claim Dilution in the Municipal Debt Market
Using loan-level municipal bank lending data, we examine the debt structure of municipalities and its response to exogenous income shocks. We show that small, more indebted, low-income, and medium credit quality counties are particularly reliant on private bank financing. Low income counties are more likely to increase bank debt share after an adverse permanent income shock while high income counties do not shift their debt structure in response. In contrast, only high income counties draw on their credit lines after adverse transitory income shocks. Overall, our paper raises concerns about ...
What’s in A(AA) Credit Rating?
Rising nonfinancial corporate business leverage, especially for riskier “high-yield” firms, has recently received increased public and supervisory scrutiny. For example, the Federal Reserve’s May 2019 Financial Stability Report notes that “growth in business debt has outpaced GDP for the past 10 years, with the most rapid growth in debt over recent years concentrated among the riskiest firms.” At the upper end of the credit spectrum, “investment-grade” firms have also increased their borrowing, while the number of higher-rated firms has decreased. In fact, there are currently ...
The Private Premium in Public Bonds?
In a 2012 New York Fed study, Chenyang Wei and I find that interest rate spreads on publicly traded bonds issued by companies with privately traded equity are about 31 basis points higher on average than spreads on bonds issued by companies with publicly traded equity, even after controlling for risk and other factors. These differences are economically and statistically significant and they persist in the secondary market. We control for many factors associated with bond pricing, including risk, liquidity, and covenants. Although these controls account for some of the absolute pricing ...