Robbing the Bank: Non-Recourse Lending and Asset Prices
Posted: 1 Oct 2003
We investigate the market prices of assets in fixed supply whose purchase is typically financed through non-recourse loans. The largest and most common asset in this category is real estate. We demonstrate two features of such markets: Lenders' underpricing of the put option contained in non-recourse loans leads to inflated asset prices within efficient markets, and lenders with short-term horizons have incentives to underprice the put option. These results hold when participants in both equity and debt markets are rational. The model also allows for management compensation that is aligned with maximizing bank shareholders' value. Using real estate transaction data we find empirical evidence consistent with the predictions of the model.
Keywords: asset pricing, lending markets, price bubbles
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