The relationship between capital structure and product markets: evidence from New Zealand

The relationship between capital structure and product markets: evidence from New Zealand The main purpose of this paper is to investigate whether the capital structure of New Zealand firms influences their product-market performance in the period from 1984 to 2008. Our main findings are that the use of leverage by publicly listed New Zealand companies leads to an increase in relative-to-industry sales growth, but a decrease in relative-to-industry return on assets (ROA). We also conduct a reverse causality test by examining whether sales growth and ROA influence leverage. We find no evidence that sales growth has an impact on the use of debt, but significant evidence that ROA is negatively correlated with its use. Our results suggest that New Zealand firms use debt to compete more aggressively in their product markets, even though this strategy comes at a cost of lower relative-to-industry profitability. A possible explanation for this behavior is the more competitive trading environment that has developed in New Zealand over the last 25 years. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Review of Quantitative Finance and Accounting Springer Journals

The relationship between capital structure and product markets: evidence from New Zealand

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Publisher
Springer US
Copyright
Copyright © 2010 by Springer Science+Business Media, LLC
Subject
Finance; Corporate Finance; Accounting/Auditing; Econometrics; Operation Research/Decision Theory
ISSN
0924-865X
eISSN
1573-7179
D.O.I.
10.1007/s11156-010-0216-x
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

The main purpose of this paper is to investigate whether the capital structure of New Zealand firms influences their product-market performance in the period from 1984 to 2008. Our main findings are that the use of leverage by publicly listed New Zealand companies leads to an increase in relative-to-industry sales growth, but a decrease in relative-to-industry return on assets (ROA). We also conduct a reverse causality test by examining whether sales growth and ROA influence leverage. We find no evidence that sales growth has an impact on the use of debt, but significant evidence that ROA is negatively correlated with its use. Our results suggest that New Zealand firms use debt to compete more aggressively in their product markets, even though this strategy comes at a cost of lower relative-to-industry profitability. A possible explanation for this behavior is the more competitive trading environment that has developed in New Zealand over the last 25 years.

Journal

Review of Quantitative Finance and AccountingSpringer Journals

Published: Nov 3, 2010

References

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