A reconsideration of operating-financial leverage tradeoff hypothesis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Purpose: This paper aims to attempt to perform a test of the operating leverage-financial leverage tradeoff hypothesis that is more methodologically consistent with the logical framing of the hypothesis appearing in the Mandelker and Rhee (1984) paper. Design/methodology/approach: The paper uses a sample of firms from the manufacturing industry to estimate their degree of operating leverage and degree of financial leverage coefficients. The switching regression methodology is then used to perform the empirical test of the tradeoff hypothesis. Findings: The results suggest that firms tradeoff their operating and financial leverage during good economic times, but do not engage in the tradeoff behavior during recessionary times. Originality/value: This paper refines the empirical testing of the tradeoff hypothesis using the innovative switching regression methodology. The paper also has important implications for the impact of firms’ risk on the capital markets as well as the economy as a whole, and for academic researchers in financial economics examining the relationships between operating and financial leverage and various firm-specific variables.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)473-483
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Financial Economic Policy
Volume10
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 5 2018

Fingerprint

Trade-offs
Financial leverage
Operating leverage
Switching regression
Methodology
Empirical test
Financial economics
Capital markets
Design methodology
Economics
Logic
Testing
Manufacturing industries
Firm risk
Coefficients

Keywords

  • Econometric and statistical methods
  • Financial risk and risk management

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Finance
  • Economics and Econometrics

Cite this

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title = "A reconsideration of operating-financial leverage tradeoff hypothesis",
abstract = "Purpose: This paper aims to attempt to perform a test of the operating leverage-financial leverage tradeoff hypothesis that is more methodologically consistent with the logical framing of the hypothesis appearing in the Mandelker and Rhee (1984) paper. Design/methodology/approach: The paper uses a sample of firms from the manufacturing industry to estimate their degree of operating leverage and degree of financial leverage coefficients. The switching regression methodology is then used to perform the empirical test of the tradeoff hypothesis. Findings: The results suggest that firms tradeoff their operating and financial leverage during good economic times, but do not engage in the tradeoff behavior during recessionary times. Originality/value: This paper refines the empirical testing of the tradeoff hypothesis using the innovative switching regression methodology. The paper also has important implications for the impact of firms’ risk on the capital markets as well as the economy as a whole, and for academic researchers in financial economics examining the relationships between operating and financial leverage and various firm-specific variables.",
keywords = "Econometric and statistical methods, Financial risk and risk management",
author = "Dugan, {Michael Timothy} and Medcalfe, {Simon K} and Park, {Sang H}",
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journal = "Journal of Financial Economic Policy",
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publisher = "Emerald Group Publishing Ltd.",
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AU - Medcalfe, Simon K

AU - Park, Sang H

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N2 - Purpose: This paper aims to attempt to perform a test of the operating leverage-financial leverage tradeoff hypothesis that is more methodologically consistent with the logical framing of the hypothesis appearing in the Mandelker and Rhee (1984) paper. Design/methodology/approach: The paper uses a sample of firms from the manufacturing industry to estimate their degree of operating leverage and degree of financial leverage coefficients. The switching regression methodology is then used to perform the empirical test of the tradeoff hypothesis. Findings: The results suggest that firms tradeoff their operating and financial leverage during good economic times, but do not engage in the tradeoff behavior during recessionary times. Originality/value: This paper refines the empirical testing of the tradeoff hypothesis using the innovative switching regression methodology. The paper also has important implications for the impact of firms’ risk on the capital markets as well as the economy as a whole, and for academic researchers in financial economics examining the relationships between operating and financial leverage and various firm-specific variables.

AB - Purpose: This paper aims to attempt to perform a test of the operating leverage-financial leverage tradeoff hypothesis that is more methodologically consistent with the logical framing of the hypothesis appearing in the Mandelker and Rhee (1984) paper. Design/methodology/approach: The paper uses a sample of firms from the manufacturing industry to estimate their degree of operating leverage and degree of financial leverage coefficients. The switching regression methodology is then used to perform the empirical test of the tradeoff hypothesis. Findings: The results suggest that firms tradeoff their operating and financial leverage during good economic times, but do not engage in the tradeoff behavior during recessionary times. Originality/value: This paper refines the empirical testing of the tradeoff hypothesis using the innovative switching regression methodology. The paper also has important implications for the impact of firms’ risk on the capital markets as well as the economy as a whole, and for academic researchers in financial economics examining the relationships between operating and financial leverage and various firm-specific variables.

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