Relationship‐Specific Assets and the Pricing of Underwriter Services

  • Published: Apr 30, 2012
  • Pages: 1865-1885
  • DOI: 10.1111/j.1540-6261.1992.tb04686.x


This paper investigates the effect of setup costs on the pricing of investment banking services. The existence of setup costs is predicted to result in lower underwriter spreads in IPOs for firms that are expected to issue again. Consistent with this prediction, I find significantly lower spreads for firms that make subsequent issues. I also find that a firm's likelihood of changing underwriters in a subsequent offer is related to the time between offerings and the underwriter's pricing performance in the IPO. These results suggest that the deviations from optimal IPO pricing carry a penalty for the underwriter.

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