1 Department of Economics and Business - Business Studies, Department of Economics and Business Economics, Aarhus BSS, Aarhus University2 Department of Economics and Business Economics, Aarhus BSS, Aarhus University3 unknown4 Thomson Rivers University5 Department of Economics and Business Economics, Aarhus BSS, Aarhus University
This paper tests for pecking order behavior in medium-sized private Portuguese firms. In contrast to the usual split between internal funds, debt, and external equity, we separate debt into four components – cheap trade credits (CTC), bank loans (BL), other loans, and expensive credits (EC). We use breakpoint tests to identify when firms switch between funding sources by examining the change in each funding source based on the financing deficit remaining after the previous pecking order funding source has been used. Our tests indicate that Portuguese companies generally move from lower cost to higher cost financing sources, but they do not exhaust each type of debt before moving on to the next funding source in the pecking order. Such behavior is consistent with a loose interpretation of pecking order financing, but not a strict interpretation of the theory. Instead, Portuguese firms may be balancing pecking order financing with a need to maintain some degree of financing flexibility.