Abstract Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to investigate the use of trade credit in a sample of small and medium enterprises in Europe, before and after the outbreak of the subprime financial crisis and the sovereign debt crisis (2006-2013). This study aims to verify whether trade credit is an alternative source of funding compared to other sources of financing. In addition, it tests whether firms that grant extended payment terms to their customers demand delayed accounts payable terms from their suppliers. Design/methodology/approach – The empirical analysis is conducted on a sample of European SMEs that were observed over the period immediately before and after the outbreak of the subprime crisis (2008) and the sovereign debt crisis (2010-2011). A panel data analysis is conducted using the generalized method of moment. Findings – The results suggest that SMEs with a high probability of insolvency use trade credit more extensively. Distressed and weaker SMEs are less able to match accounts receivable to accounts payable. Finally, the evidence suggests that during the financial crises, the substitution hypothesis is weakened and liquidity shocks are propagated through trade credit channels. Originality/value – This study contributes to the extant literature as very few studies have analyzed intercompany financing for European SMEs during periods of financial crisis. The results suggest that supporting trade credit channels, through timely injections of liquidity to companies, could reduce the impact of both financial and intercompany credit crunch on SMEs.

Trade Credit in Times of Crisis: Evidence from European SMEs

BUSSOLI, CANDIDA
2018

Abstract

Abstract Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to investigate the use of trade credit in a sample of small and medium enterprises in Europe, before and after the outbreak of the subprime financial crisis and the sovereign debt crisis (2006-2013). This study aims to verify whether trade credit is an alternative source of funding compared to other sources of financing. In addition, it tests whether firms that grant extended payment terms to their customers demand delayed accounts payable terms from their suppliers. Design/methodology/approach – The empirical analysis is conducted on a sample of European SMEs that were observed over the period immediately before and after the outbreak of the subprime crisis (2008) and the sovereign debt crisis (2010-2011). A panel data analysis is conducted using the generalized method of moment. Findings – The results suggest that SMEs with a high probability of insolvency use trade credit more extensively. Distressed and weaker SMEs are less able to match accounts receivable to accounts payable. Finally, the evidence suggests that during the financial crises, the substitution hypothesis is weakened and liquidity shocks are propagated through trade credit channels. Originality/value – This study contributes to the extant literature as very few studies have analyzed intercompany financing for European SMEs during periods of financial crisis. The results suggest that supporting trade credit channels, through timely injections of liquidity to companies, could reduce the impact of both financial and intercompany credit crunch on SMEs.
SMEs; Trade credit; Financial crisis
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/20.500.12572/342
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