Reputations and Credit Ratings: Evidence from Commercial Mortgage-Backed Securities

53 Pages Posted: 26 Oct 2016 Last revised: 14 Sep 2018

See all articles by Ramin Baghai

Ramin Baghai

Stockholm School of Economics; Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR); Swedish House of Finance

Bo Becker

Stockholm School of Economics; Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR); ECGI

Date Written: September 13, 2018

Abstract

How do changes in a rating agency’s reputation affect the ratings market? We study the dynamics of credit ratings after Standard & Poor’s (S&P) was shut out of a large segment of the commercial mortgage-backed securities (CMBS) ratings market following a procedural mistake. Exploiting the fact that most CMBS securities have ratings from multiple agencies, we show that S&P subsequently eased its standards compared to other raters. This coincided with a partial recovery in the number of deals S&P was hired to rate. Our findings are consistent with the view that an agency can regain market share after suffering reputational damage by issuing more optimistic ratings.

Keywords: Credit ratings, reputation, competition, information quality, commercial mortgage-backed securities

JEL Classification: G20, G24, G28

Suggested Citation

Baghai, Ramin and Becker, Bo, Reputations and Credit Ratings: Evidence from Commercial Mortgage-Backed Securities (September 13, 2018). Swedish House of Finance Research Paper No. 16-21. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2858904 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2858904

Ramin Baghai (Contact Author)

Stockholm School of Economics ( email )

PO Box 6501
Stockholm, 11383
Sweden

Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR) ( email )

London
United Kingdom

Swedish House of Finance ( email )

Drottninggatan 98
111 60 Stockholm
Sweden

Bo Becker

Stockholm School of Economics ( email )

Drottninggatan 98
Dept. of Finance
111 60 Stockholm, 11160
Sweden

Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR) ( email )

London
United Kingdom

ECGI ( email )

c/o ECARES ULB CP 114
B-1050 Brussels
Belgium

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