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JournalISSN: 0002-8282

The American Economic Review 

About: The American Economic Review is an academic journal. The journal publishes majorly in the area(s): Population & Wage. It has an ISSN identifier of 0002-8282. Over the lifetime, 9729 publication(s) have been published receiving 1715345 citation(s).

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Journal Article
Abstract: The potential advantages of the market-value approach have long been appreciated; yet analytical results have been meager. What appears to be keeping this line of development from achieving its promise is largely the lack of an adequate theory of the effect of financial structure on market valuations, and of how these effects can be inferred from objective market data. It is with the development of such a theory and of its implications for the cost-of-capital problem that we shall be concerned in this paper. Our procedure will be to develop in Section I the basic theory itself and to give some brief account of its empirical relevance. In Section II we show how the theory can be used to answer the cost-of-capital questions and how it permits us to develop a theory of investment of the firm under conditions of uncertainty. Throughout these sections the approach is essentially a partial-equilibrium one focusing on the firm and "industry". Accordingly, the "prices" of certain income streams will be treated as constant and given from outside the model, just as in the standard Marshallian analysis of the firm and industry the prices of all inputs and of all other products are taken as given. We have chosen to focus at this level rather than on the economy as a whole because it is at firm and the industry that the interests of the various specialists concerned with the cost-of-capital problem come most closely together. Although the emphasis has thus been placed on partial-equilibrium analysis, the results obtained also provide the essential building block for a general equilibrium model which shows how those prices which are here taken as given, are themselves determined. For reasons of space, however, and because the material is of interest in its own right, the presentation of the general equilibrium model which rounds out the analysis must be deferred to a subsequent paper.

15,334 citations

Posted Content
Abstract: The interests and incentives of managers and shareholders conflict over such issues as the optimal size of the firm and the payment of cash to shareholders. These conflicts are especially severe in firms with large free cash flows—more cash than profitable investment opportunities. The theory developed here explains 1) the benefits of debt in reducing agency costs of free cash flows, 2) how debt can substitute for dividends, 3) why “diversification” programs are more likely to generate losses than takeovers or expansion in the same line of business or liquidationmotivated takeovers, 4) why the factors generating takeover activity in such diverse activities as broadcasting and tobacco are similar to those in oil, and 5) why bidders and some targets tend to perform abnormally well prior to takeover.

14,358 citations

Posted ContentDOI
Abstract: According to basic economics, if demand exceeds supply, prices will rise, thus decreasing demand or increasing supply until demand and supply are in equilibrium; thus if prices do their job, rationing will not exist. However, credit rationing does exist. This paper demonstrates that even in equilibrium, credit rationing will exist in a loan market. Credit rationing is defined as occurring either (a) among loan applicants who appear identical, and some do and do not receive loans, even though the rejected applicants would pay higher interest rates; or (b) there are groups who, with a given credit supply, cannot obtain loans at any rate, even though with larger credit supply they would. A model is developed to provide the first theoretical justification for true credit rationing. The amount of the loan and the amount of collateral demanded affect the behavior and distribution of borrowers. Consequently, faced with increased credit demand, it may not be profitable to raise interest rates or collateral; instead banks deny loans to borrowers who are observationally indistinguishable from those receiving loans. It is not argued that credit rationing always occurs, but that it occurs under plausible assumptions about lender and borrower behavior. In the model, interest rates serve as screening devices for evaluating risk. Interest rates change the behavior (serve as incentive mechanism) for the borrower, increasing the relative attractiveness of riskier projects; banks ration credit, rather than increase rates when there is excess demand. Banks are shown not to increase collateral as a means of allocating credit; although collateral may have incentivizing effects, it may have adverse selection effects. Equity, nonlinear payment schedules, and contingency contracts may be introduced and yet there still may be rationing. The law of supply and demand is thus a result generated by specific assumptions and is model specific; credit rationing does exist. (TNM)

12,719 citations

Posted Content
Abstract: This publication contains reprint articles for which IEEE does not hold copyright. Full text is not available on IEEE Xplore for these articles.

8,506 citations

Book ChapterDOI
Abstract: The process of industrialization engenders increasing income inequality as the labor force shifts from low-income agriculture to the high income sectors. On more advanced levels of development inequality starts decreasing and industrialized countries are again characterized by low inequality due to the smaller weight of agriculture in production (and income generation).

7,619 citations

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