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Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1807/24389

Title: Debt Financing, Bankruptcy Reorganization and Corporate Investment
Authors: Zhou, Simiao
Advisor: Aivazian, Varouj
Department: Economics
Keywords: Corporate Finance
Corporate Investment
Debt Overhang
Underinvestment
Dynamic Panel Models
Corporate Bankruptcy
Chapter 11
Issue Date: 21-Apr-2010
Abstract: In this thesis, I investigate economic and policy implications of corporate debt financing. In the first chapter, I examine whether or not leverage has a negative effect on corporate investment due to a debt overhang problem. Existing empirical studies face a challenging endogeneity problem inherent in the investment-leverage relationship, the source of which is the firm's anticipation of its growth opportunities. I develop a novel approach to control for this problem by using analysts' earnings forecasts as an anticipation measure. I show that anticipations influence the investment-leverage relationship in that firms that do anticipate future growth opportunities suffer less from debt overhang. In the second chapter, I extend Chapter One's analysis to a dynamic setting. I first establish that there is a stable long-term relationship between investment and leverage, and then disentangle the short-term dynamics of leverage and investment and find that the deviation of leverage from its benchmark path has a negative impact on the change in investment. I also employ dynamic panel models to estimate the causal dynamic effects of leverage on investment. The estimations show that the impact is negative for recent leverage, but positive for leverage in the more distant past. Also, the effects of leverage are attenuated when the investment uncertainties are further controlled. This suggests that the firm's response to investment uncertainties might explain dynamic effects of leverage on investment. In Chapter Three, I investigate the effects of the U.S. Chapter 11 bankruptcy-reorganization law on firm operating performance, and adopt matching methods to account for self-selection and heterogeneity in firms' pre-filing characteristics. Matching methods entail the selection of a control group of non-bankrupt firms that are comparable to Chapter 11 filing firms in a wide range of pre-filing characteristics that affect filing decisions. Comparing the operating performances of the two groups, I find that filing firms' net cash flows, but not operating incomes, improve significantly during bankruptcy. Furthermore, firms reduce their leverage levels and incur lower interest expenses after bankruptcy. The results suggest that the reduction in interest expenses contributes to the improvement in firms' net cash flows during bankruptcy.
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/1807/24389
Appears in Collections:Doctoral
Department of Economics - Doctoral theses

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