DP8325 | How do credit conditions shape economic recoveries?

Publication Date

03/04/2011

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Abstract

This paper investigates the role of credit in shaping economic recoveries and tries to shed some light on the phenomenon of creditless recoveries using industry-level data for a large sample of countries. We find that while a failure of the credit stock to recover to its pre-crisis level does not hamper growth, a failure of credit flows to recover slows down economic recovery. Next, we find that industries that are more dependent on external finance recover more quickly in countries with better financial development during creditless recoveries as defined by Calvo et al. (2006a). This indicates that certain mechanisms enable the economy to grow despite the creditless character of recovery. These mechanisms may include the availability of alternative sources of financing such as trade credit, the re-allocation to less credit dependent sectors, or the take-up of unutilized capacity. Finally, we find evidence that industries that are more dependent on trade credit as opposed to bank credit recover more quickly because they are less vulnerable to prolonged credit market disruptions. This 'substitution effect' is stronger during creditless recoveries, giving support to the view that creditless recoveries are a response to protracted disruptions in official credit markets.