Firms incur debts in different ways, through taking out loans with banks or issuing equity. In turn, debt structures vary according to debt instrument characteristics, such as interest, terms, markets and currencies. With Brazil’s GDP dropping steadily since 2014, its government has deployed a countercyclical policy buttressed firmly on government banks granting loans. This prompts the question of whether firms are incurring debt more heterogeneously after 2014 through taking out loans with government banks. Consequently, the main purpose of this study is to identify the debt structures of privately-held non-financial Brazilian firms, together with the factors steering their preferences for these debt structures. This purpose is pursued through a sample of 104 firms whose data were obtained for 2009 to 2016 from the Valor PRO database, which is a basic analytical tool run by the Valor Econômico newspaper. The hypotheses were then tested through descriptive statistics, correlation analyses, pooled data regressions and difference-in-differences tests. As a result, it was ascertained that it is not possible to confirm whether firms incurred debts more heterogeneously after 2014, while noting that size and leverage define their debt structures.
Debt structure; government and private banks; countercyclical policy; difference in differences, privately-held companies