Is a Friend in Need a Friend Indeed? How Relationship Borrowers Fare during the COVID-19 Crisis

62 Pages Posted: 28 Dec 2020 Last revised: 6 Oct 2021

See all articles by Allen N. Berger

Allen N. Berger

University of South Carolina - Darla Moore School of Business; Wharton Financial Institutions Center; European Banking Center

Christa H. S. Bouwman

Texas A&M University; Wharton Financial Institutions Center

Lars Norden

Getulio Vargas Foundation (FGV) - Brazilian School of Public and Business Administration (EBAPE); Getulio Vargas Foundation (FGV) - FGV/EPGE Escola Brasileira de Economia e Finanças

Raluca A. Roman

Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia

Gregory F. Udell

Indiana University - Kelley School of Business - Department of Finance

Teng Wang

Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System

Date Written: May 25, 2021

Abstract

We investigate how relationship borrowers fare relative to others in loan contract terms (spread, collateral, maturity, amount) during times of need using the COVID-19 quasi-natural experiment. COVID-19 is superior for such analysis because it primarily affects borrowers rather than banks. Our Y-14Q loan-level dataset has broader representation than other datasets. We find the dark side of relationships dominates across relationship measures, COVID-19 shocks, and PPP participation. Additional bank-level analysis suggests dark-side dominance for contract terms at the intensive margin is not offset by increased credit access at the extensive margin. Limited brightside findings hold for smaller firms and smaller banks.

Keywords: Banks, bank loans, relationship lending, loan contract terms, financial crises, COVID- 19, Paycheck Protection Program (PPP)

JEL Classification: G01, G21, G28

Suggested Citation

Berger, Allen N. and Bouwman, Christa H. S. and Norden, Lars and Roman, Raluca A. and Udell, Gregory F. and Wang, Teng, Is a Friend in Need a Friend Indeed? How Relationship Borrowers Fare during the COVID-19 Crisis (May 25, 2021). Kelley School of Business Research Paper No. 2021-01, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3755243 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3755243

Allen N. Berger

University of South Carolina - Darla Moore School of Business ( email )

1705 College St
Francis M. Hipp Building
Columbia, SC 29208
United States
803-576-8440 (Phone)
803-777-6876 (Fax)

Wharton Financial Institutions Center

Philadelphia, PA 19104-6367
United States

European Banking Center

P.O. Box 90153
Tilburg, 5000 LE
Netherlands

Christa H. S. Bouwman

Texas A&M University ( email )

360H Wehner
College Station, TX 77843-4218
United States
979-845-3514 (Phone)
979-845-3514 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://people.tamu.edu/~cbouwman/

Wharton Financial Institutions Center

2306 Steinberg Hall-Dietrich Hall
3620 Locust Walk
Philadelphia, PA 19104
United States

Lars Norden

Getulio Vargas Foundation (FGV) - Brazilian School of Public and Business Administration (EBAPE) ( email )

Rua Jornalista Orlando Dantas 30
Rio de Janeiro, 22231-010
Brazil
+552130832431 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://www.larsnorden.de

Getulio Vargas Foundation (FGV) - FGV/EPGE Escola Brasileira de Economia e Finanças ( email )

Praia de Botafogo 190/1125, CEP
Rio de Janeiro RJ 22253-900
Brazil

Raluca A. Roman

Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia ( email )

Ten Independence Mall
Philadelphia, PA 19106-1574
United States

Gregory F. Udell

Indiana University - Kelley School of Business - Department of Finance ( email )

1309 E. 10th St.
Bloomington, IN 47405
United States

Teng Wang (Contact Author)

Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System ( email )

20th Street and Constitution Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20551
United States

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