Starjournal Quotation Friewald, Nils, Wagner, Christian, Zechner, Josef. 2014. The Cross-Section of Credit Risk Premia and Equity Returns. Journal of Finance 69 (6), 2419-2469.




We explore the link between a firm's stock returns and credit risk using a simple insight from structural models following Merton (1974): risk premia on equity and credit instruments are related because all claims on assets must earn the same compensation per unit of risk. Consistent with theory, we find that firms' stock returns increase with credit risk premia estimated from CDS spreads. Credit risk premia contain information not captured by physical or risk-neutral default probabilities alone. This sheds new light on the “distress puzzle”—the lack of a positive relation between equity returns and default probabilities—reported in previous studies.


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Publication's profile

Status of publication Published
Affiliation WU
Type of publication Journal article
Journal Journal of Finance
Citation Index SSCI
WU Journalrating 2009 A+
Starjournal Y
Language English
Title The Cross-Section of Credit Risk Premia and Equity Returns
Volume 69
Number 6
Year 2014
Page from 2419
Page to 2469
Reviewed? Y


Friewald, Nils (Former researcher)
Wagner, Christian (Details)
Zechner, Josef (Details)
Institute for Finance, Banking and Insurance IN (Details)
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