How Does Owners' Exposure to Idiosyncratic Risk Influence the Capital Structure of Private Companies?

Müller, Elisabeth

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URN: urn:nbn:de:bsz:180-madoc-9492
Document Type: Working paper
Year of publication: 2005
The title of a journal, publication series: None
Publication language: English
Institution: Sonstige Einrichtungen > ZEW - Leibniz-Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung
MADOC publication series: Veröffentlichungen des ZEW (Leibniz-Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung) > ZEW Discussion Papers
Subject: 330 Economics
Classification: JEL: G32 G30 ,
Subject headings (SWD): Kapitalstruktur , Risiko , Privatunternehmen
Abstract: This paper identifies the entrepreneur's exposure to idiosyncratic risk as an important determinant of the capital structure of private companies. The exposure to idiosyncratic risk is approximated by the share of personal net worth invested in one company (SNWI). Exposure to idiosyncratic risk increases cost of equity capital since higher equity returns are required as compensation. This makes bank financing more attractive. We find that SNWI increases the demand for new bank loans whereas we cannot identify an effect on the supply. Equilibrium values of leverage increase significantly in SNWI but there is no effect on the equilibrium interest rate.
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