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Decomposing fire sale discounts



Publishing details

European Corporate Governance Institute - Finance Working Paper

Authors / Editors

Franks J R;Seth G;Sussman O;Vig V


Publication Year



The paper decomposes the raw fire sale discount into a quality component, a misallocation component, and a residual liquidity component. We find that distressed airlines under-maintain their fleets and, this quality impairment explains half of the discount. We find no evidence of misallocation to lower productivity users. While the raw discounts are much larger for Chapter 7 than Chapter 11 transactions, the difference is largely explained by longer periods of under-maintenance and consequently lower quality of aircraft sold in Chapter 7. The evidence suggests that the magnitude of welfare losses associated with fire sales are likely to be overstated.


Fire sale; Bankruptcy; Under maintenance

Series Number



European Corporate Governance Institute - Finance Working Paper

Available on ECCH


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