What determines debt structure in emerging markets: Transaction costs or public monitoring?

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Goodell, John W.
Goyal, Abhinav
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We examine the predilection for private bonds over bank financing (debt structure) for emerging markets within the frameworks of both transaction cost economics and a transparency explanation, emphasizing the distinction between public monitoring (bonds) and private monitoring (banks), as well as considering the influence of national culture on institutions. Employing several tests, including structural equation modeling, we find, among many results that in emerging markets bonds are preferred over bank loans when there is less corporate opacity and fewer foreign access restrictions, as well as in environment of greater political instability, transaction cost, and limits to legal protection. Bonds are also favored over banks in cultural environments of greater uncertainty avoidance, masculinity, long-term orientation, and indulgence and less individualism. Overall, we attribute our results to culture and institutional quality together influencing debt structure, particularly by impacting attitudes toward public monitoring. Our results will be of great interest to researchers interested in the legal, social, and cultural environments of emerging markets.
Corporate bonds , Debt structure , Emerging markets , National culture , Public monitoring , Relationship financing , Transaction costs
Goodell, J. W. and Goyal, A. (2018) 'What determines debt structure in emerging markets: Transaction costs or public monitoring?', International Review of Financial Analysis, 55, pp. 184-195. doi 10.1016/j.irfa.2017.07.004