Cross-subsidization of Bad Credit in a Lending Crisis
63 Pages Posted: 4 Apr 2022
Date Written: March 10, 2022
We study the corporate-loan pricing decisions of a major Greek bank during the Greek financial crisis. A unique aspect of our dataset is that we observe both the interest rate and the ``breakeven rate'' of each loan, as computed by the bank's own loan-pricing department (in effect, the loan's marginal cost). We document that low-breakeven-rate (safer) borrowers are charged significant markups, whereas high-breakeven-rate (riskier) borrowers are charged small and sometimes even negative markups. We rationalize this de-facto cross-subsidization of riskier borrowers by safer borrowers through the lens of a dynamic model featuring depressed collateral values, impaired capital-market access, and limit pricing.
Keywords: Passthrough, cross-subsidization
JEL Classification: E43, E51, G01, G21, G28
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation