When Does Strategic Debt Service Matter?
Posted: 9 May 2006
Recent work in corporate finance has suggested that strategic debt-service by equityholders works to lower debt values and raise yield spreads substantially. We show that this is not quite correct. With optimal cash management, defaults occasioned by deliberate underperformance (strategic defaults) and those forced by inadequate cash (liquidity defaults) work as substitutes: allowing for strategic debt-service leads to a decline in the equilibrium likelihood of liquidity defaults. In some cases, this decline is sufficiently sharp that equilibrium debt values actually increase and yield spreads decline. We provide an intuitive explanation for these results in terms of an interaction of optionalities.
Keywords: Strategic debt-service, optimal cash management, liquidity defaults, strategic defaults, yield spreads
JEL Classification: G13, G33, G35
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation