Steven Ongena

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A recent string of theoretical papers has highlighted the importance of geographical distance in explaining loan rates for small firms. Lenders located in the vicinity of small firms face significantly lower transportation and monitoring costs, and hence wield considerable market power, if competing financiers are located relatively far from the borrowing(More)
We investigate the impact of the stance and path of monetary policy on the level of credit risk of individual bank loans and on lending standards. We employ the Credit Register of the Bank of Spain that contains detailed monthly information on virtually all loans granted by all credit institutions operating in Spain during the last twenty-two years –(More)
Private equity funds pay particular attention to capital structure when executing leveraged buyouts, creating an interesting setting for examining capital structure theories. Using a large, detailed, international sample of buyouts from 1980-2008, we find that buyout leverage is unrelated to the cross-sectional factors – suggested by traditional capital(More)
Using a unique sample of comparable online and in-person loan transactions, we study the determinants of arm’s-length and inside lending focusing on the di¤erential information content across debt types. We …nd that soft private information primarily underlies relationship lending whereas hard public information drives arm’s-length debt. The bank’s relative(More)
Internal credit ratings are expected to gain in importance because of their potential use for determining regulatory capital adequacy and banks’ increasing focus on the risk-return profile in commercial lending. Therefore, the components of internal credit ratings merit not only a qualitative but also a quantitative analysis. Whereas the eligibility of(More)
We combine recent findings from the empirical banking literature with established insights from studies of banking competition and regulation. Motivated by modern theory of financial intermediation we center our review on the various sources of bank rents. We start with a concise overview and assessment of the different methodological approaches taken to(More)
This paper adds to the relationship lending debate by investigating detailed contract information obtained from examining nearly eighteen thousand bank loans. The beneficiaries all were very small firms that operate within the continental European bankbased system. That is, with data gathered for Belgium, we investigate price and non-price terms of the loan(More)
This paper examines how firm characteristics, legal rules and financial development affect corporate finance decisions. In contrast to the existing literature, I use data on unlisted companies to show that institutions play an important role in determining the extent of agency problems. In particular, I find that in countries with good creditor protection,(More)
We use the near-collapse of the Norwegian banking system during the period 1988-91 to measure the impact of bank distress announcements on the stock prices of firms maintaining a relationship with a distressed bank. We find that although banks experienced large and permanent downward revisions in their equity value during the event period, firms maintaining(More)
We document a drastic reduction in hedge fund stock ownership during the recent financial crisis. In the two quarters around the Lehman collapse (2008Q3-Q4), hedge funds cut their equity holdings by about 29% and nearly every fourth fund dumped more than 40% of its equity portfolio in each quarter. We directly establish that investor redemptions were a(More)