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Financial Innovations and Macroeconomic Volatility. Urban Jermann & Vincenzo Quadrini Discussion by Wouter J. Denhaan. Excellent new framework Both debt and equity as external finance (typically only one form of external finance)

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financial innovations and macroeconomic volatility

Financial Innovations and Macroeconomic Volatility

Urban Jermann & Vincenzo Quadrini

Discussion by Wouter J. Denhaan

slide2
Excellent new framework
  • Both debt and equity as external finance (typically only one form of external finance)
  • Aggregate shock is a change in the probability of “market loss”, which is like a change in ownership.
  • No aggregate or idiosyncratic TFP shocks
slide3
Excellent topic
  • Study cyclical properties of debt and equity
  • Study impact of financial innovation on volatility of debt, equity, & output
slide4
Nice set of results
  • Financial innovation can explain changes in volatility
  • Innovations in equity markets seem more important for reduction in volatility than innovations in debt markets
  • Output much more volatile than measured TFP
slide5
Link between theory and empirical result
  • Paper tries to do too much, i.e., tries to match too many empirical results
  • For some results, neither the empirical estimates nor the theoretical predictions are very robust to modifications
  • Better to focus on key predictions of the paper
outline
Outline
  • Simplified version of model
  • Cyclical behavior of debt and equity
  • Modifications of the model
  • Empirical findings
first order conditions
First-Order Conditions

pdoes not show up directly but comes in through 

frictionless solution if 0 r 1
Frictionless solution if  = 0 &  = R-1

Equity can “undo” the friction on debt financing

theory on cyclical behavior of debt and equity
Theory on cyclical behavior of debt and equity

Substitutes

  • Jermann and Quadrini (2006)
    • Debt pro-cyclical and equity countercyclical
  • Levy and Hennessy (2006)
    • opposite

Complements

  • Covas and Denhaan (2006)
    • Debt and equity pro-cyclical
theory on cyclical behavior of equity
Theory on cyclical behavior of equity

Jerman and Quadrini (counter-cyclical):

  • No increase in need of funds during boom, but obtaining debt financing becomes easier
  • Debt procyclical and equity countercyclical

Levy and Hennessy (pro-cyclical):

  • Obtaining equity becomes easier during boom
theory on cyclical behavior of equity14
Theory on cyclical behavior of equity

Choe, Masulis, and Nanda (pro-cyclical)

  • Adverse selection problem is relatively less important during a boom
  • Equity issuance implies a transfer to debt holdings (reduction in default probability and the value of this transfer is smaller during a boom)
  • Covas and Denhaan (pro-cylical)
  • Standard debt contract with default  Desire to expand leads to tightening of bank break-even condition  pro-cyclical equity issuance
  • Counter-cyclical risk premium and equity issuance costs
how would alternatives affect cyclical behavior of equity
How would alternatives affect cyclical behavior of equity

What if lending rate increases with debt?

  • First-order condition for equity and capital not affected
  • With standard debt contract & default & bankruptcy costs, however, equity issuance would be procylcical

Cyclical exogeonous TFP

Cyclical equity issuance costs

Cyclical required rate of return on risky assets

Alternative bargaining

would modifications matter for main prediction of model
Would modifications matterfor main prediction of model?
  • Some might but several will not affect the result that easing of financial constraints reduces output volatility and increases debt and equity volatility
some of the empirical results
Some of the Empirical Results

Jerman and Quadrini Empirical Fact #2

“The debt exposure [debt/gdp] has increased during the last 50 years”

Frank and Goyal Stylized Fact #1

“Over long periods of time, leverage [debt/assets] is stationary”

Frank and Goyal Stylized Fact #2

“Over the past half century, the aggregate market-based leverage ratio has been about 0.32. There have been surprisingly small fluctuations in this ratio from decade to decade.

some of the empirical results19
Some of the Empirical Results

Jerman and Quadrini Empirical Fact #3

“Equity payouts [dividends minus equity issuance scaled by GDP] are counter-cyclical”

Covas and Denhaan

  • Dividends are pro-cyclical across firms
  • Aggregate results affected by largest top 1 to 5% and by leveraged buyouts
  • If you take out mergers
    • (Net) Equity issuance is pro-cyclical for most firms
    • (Net) Equity issuance counter-cyclical for top 1%
    • No clear pattern with aggregate data
minor comments
Minor Comments
  • Is it costly to issue dividends/repurchase shares? As costly as issuing new equity
  • Model is a bit of a black box
  • Does the representative firm ever issue equity?
  • How important are changes in asset prices?
concluding comments
Concluding comments
  • Optimal contracts:
    • One type of contract
    • No unique way of implementing it with cash reserves, debt, & equity
    • Often odd properties like no defaults
  • Fixed types of contracts:
    • Frictions too segmented. For example, couldn’t you avoid friction on debt finance by also buying some equity?
    • More helpful in understanding data