What Do We Know about Capital Structure? Some Evidence from International Data

  • Author(s): RAGHURAM G. RAJAN, LUIGI ZINGALES
  • Published: Apr 30, 2012
  • Pages: 1421-1460
  • DOI: 10.1111/j.1540-6261.1995.tb05184.x

ABSTRACT

We investigate the determinants of capital structure choice by analyzing the financing decisions of public firms in the major industrialized countries. At an aggregate level, firm leverage is fairly similar across the G‐7 countries. We find that factors identified by previous studies as correlated in the cross‐section with firm leverage in the United States, are similarly correlated in other countries as well. However, a deeper examination of the U.S. and foreign evidence suggests that the theoretical underpinnings of the observed correlations are still largely unresolved.

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