Legal reform and aggregate small and micro business bankruptcy rates: evidence from the 1997 Belgian bankruptcy code

Legal reform and aggregate small and micro business bankruptcy rates: evidence from the 1997... Many Continental European countries recently reformed their bankruptcy legislations to stimulate reorganization and firm survival. We show that the Belgian 1997 bankruptcy code reform, which implemented several international best practice recommendations, significantly reduced aggregate small and micro business bankruptcy rates. However, using distributed lag models to control for the relationship between bankruptcy rates and macroeconomic variables such as real GDP growth, consumer confidence, inflation, etc., we find that the new code’s impact is not the same for all types of companies. Specifically, while the beneficial effect of the reform is largely similar between small firms (i.e. stock corporations) and micro firms (i.e. partnerships), it is only significant in certain industries (manufacturing and trade). Overall, our results indicate that especially the measures taken to limit domino bankruptcy effects are likely to have had a substantial impact. Our findings have several policy implications for the evaluation and modification of the bankruptcy system. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Small Business Economics Springer Journals

Legal reform and aggregate small and micro business bankruptcy rates: evidence from the 1997 Belgian bankruptcy code

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Publisher
Springer US
Copyright
Copyright © 2007 by Springer Science+Business Media, LLC
Subject
Business and Management; Management; Microeconomics; Entrepreneurship; Industrial Organization
ISSN
0921-898X
eISSN
1573-0913
D.O.I.
10.1007/s11187-007-9060-3
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Many Continental European countries recently reformed their bankruptcy legislations to stimulate reorganization and firm survival. We show that the Belgian 1997 bankruptcy code reform, which implemented several international best practice recommendations, significantly reduced aggregate small and micro business bankruptcy rates. However, using distributed lag models to control for the relationship between bankruptcy rates and macroeconomic variables such as real GDP growth, consumer confidence, inflation, etc., we find that the new code’s impact is not the same for all types of companies. Specifically, while the beneficial effect of the reform is largely similar between small firms (i.e. stock corporations) and micro firms (i.e. partnerships), it is only significant in certain industries (manufacturing and trade). Overall, our results indicate that especially the measures taken to limit domino bankruptcy effects are likely to have had a substantial impact. Our findings have several policy implications for the evaluation and modification of the bankruptcy system.

Journal

Small Business EconomicsSpringer Journals

Published: Jul 4, 2007

References

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