Effect of perceived default risk and accounting information quality on the decision to grant credit to SMEs
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ABSTRACT: The present study analyses the influence that perceived default risk and accounting information quality have on the process of credit granting to SMEs. Empirical evidence was obtained from a survey of 471 bank loan officers in Spain, in which they were asked to answer questions relating to audited and not-audited firms. Through a Structural Equations Modeling (SEM) approach, the results confirm that the likelihood
that the loan officers are more willing to provide access to credit to SMEs, and to do so in more favourable conditions, is negatively influenced by perceived default risk and positively influenced by the general perception about accounting information quality. Besides, we find that information quality is an antecedent of perceived risk, so that the latter becomes the central element of the research model. Additionally, the perceptions of the decision-makers regarding all the analysed variables are better for the audited
SMEs than for the unaudited ones.
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