The paper examines the impact of business group affiliation on cost of loans in an emerging market setting. It focuses on operational strategy, organizational structure and internationalization policies of business group firms and their impact on borrowing cost of affiliated firms. Bank loans are a dominant source of corporate funding in emerging markets, in which business groups exist as leading economic entities. Yet, the impact of belonging to a group on the firm’s cost of debt has not been studied in depth. Our results reveal that the extent of group affiliation, government ownership, and diversification increase the cost of loans. However, a group bank is advantageous in terms of borrowing, and decreases the cost of loans. While foreign ownership is beneficial in terms of pricing, being affiliated with a foreign group is not. Being a financial firm and being cross-listed are not significantly associated with bank loan terms. Borrowing costs are thus influenced in various ways by organizational structure, operational strategies, and global policies of business groups and affiliates. Therefore, business groups may benefit from strategically implementing policies and selecting loan applicant firms.
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