Short-term debt overhang

Giulio Trigilia, Kostas Koufopoulos (York) , Pavel Zryumov - Jul 11, 2023

Working Paper No.  00106-00

We show that short-term debt in a firm’s optimal capital structure reduces investment under asymmetric information. Investors’ interpretation of underinvestment as a positive signal about the quality of the assets in place allows the equity holders to profit from short-term debt repricing at the rollover stage. Thus, underinvestment is more pronounced at shorter maturities, in contrast to Myers (1977). Low types’ incentives to mimic put an endogenous constraint on high types’ underinvestment payoff via a duration floor. Perhaps most strikingly, because cash lowers the duration floor, an increase in a firm’s retained earnings can decrease investment.

Download Paper

delegation filtering