Voluntary Disclosure, Moral Hazard and Default Risk
46 Pages Posted: 12 Feb 2018 Last revised: 16 Oct 2019
Date Written: February 23, 2018
We study a dynamic moral hazard setting where the manager has private ev- idence that predicts the firm's cash flows. When performance is low, bad news disclosure is rewarded by a lower borrowing cost relative to the no-evidence case. In contrast, no disclosure is associated with higher borrowing costs. On net, disclo- sure weakens the relation between cash incentives (or stock values) and short-term performance, which lowers the firm’s default risk on path. However, the expecta- tion of future disclosure might increase the optimal initial level of debt, to a point where the firm’s default risk actually rises relative to the no-evidence case.
Keywords: voluntary disclosure, credit spreads, default risk, dynamic moral hazard, funding liquidity, information technologies, real options
JEL Classification: G32, D86, D61
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation