Does Increased Competition Affect Credit Ratings? A Reexamination of the Effect of Fitch's Market Share on Credit Ratings in the Corporate Bond Market
50 Pages Posted: 5 Sep 2013 Last revised: 14 Oct 2013
Date Written: August 23, 2013
We examine two competing views regarding the impact of competition among credit rating agencies on rating quality: the view that rating agencies do not sacrifice their reputation by inflating firm ratings and the view that competition among rating agencies arising from the conflict of interest inherent in an ‘issuer pay’ model creates pressure to inflate ratings. Using Fitch’s market share as a measure of competition among rating agencies and controlling for the endogeneity problem caused by unobservable industry effects, we find no relation between Fitch’s market share and ratings, suggesting that competition does not lead to rating inflation.
Keywords: Credit rating, competition, rating quality
JEL Classification: G29
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