Tightening credit standards: the role of accounting quality

Tightening credit standards: the role of accounting quality Over the latest 20 years, the average credit rating of U.S. corporations has trended down. Blume et al. (1998, Journal of Finance, 53, 1389–1413.) attribute this trend to a tightening of credit standards by agencies. We reexamine the observed decreases in credit ratings in several ways. First, we show that this downward trend does not apply to speculative-grade issuers. Second, our analysis of investment-grade issuers suggests that the apparent tightening of standards can be attributed primarily to changes in accounting quality over time. After incorporating changing accounting quality, we find no evidence that rating agencies have tightened their credit standards. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Review of Accounting Studies Springer Journals

Tightening credit standards: the role of accounting quality

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Publisher
Springer US
Copyright
Copyright © 2007 by Springer Science+Business Media, LLC
Subject
Business and Management; Accounting/Auditing; Corporate Finance; Public Finance
ISSN
1380-6653
eISSN
1573-7136
D.O.I.
10.1007/s11142-007-9054-z
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Over the latest 20 years, the average credit rating of U.S. corporations has trended down. Blume et al. (1998, Journal of Finance, 53, 1389–1413.) attribute this trend to a tightening of credit standards by agencies. We reexamine the observed decreases in credit ratings in several ways. First, we show that this downward trend does not apply to speculative-grade issuers. Second, our analysis of investment-grade issuers suggests that the apparent tightening of standards can be attributed primarily to changes in accounting quality over time. After incorporating changing accounting quality, we find no evidence that rating agencies have tightened their credit standards.

Journal

Review of Accounting StudiesSpringer Journals

Published: Nov 6, 2007

References

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