The IMF Working Papers series is designed to make IMF staff research available to a wide audience. Almost 300 Working Papers are released each year, covering a wide range of theoretical and analytical topics, including balance of payments, monetary and fiscal issues, global liquidity, and national and international economic developments.
Superior information exchanged over the course of lending relationships generates bank-client specificities to the extent that such information cannot be communicated credibly to outsiders. Consequently, banks obtain higher profits from more captured borrowers than from borrowers with financing alternatives. We refer to this as a “flight to captivity” effect. Negative shocks, associated with monetary contractions or foreign entry, cause a reallocation of bank credit away from more transparent borrowers and toward more opaque, more captured borrowers. The paper applies these ideas to the analysis of bank behavior in transition economies after financial liberalization and monetary policy contractions.