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This paper studies the institution of bankruptcy when exclusive contracts cannot be enforced ex ante, e.g., a bank cannot monitor whether the borrower enters into contracts with other creditors. The institution of bankruptcy enables the bank to enforce its claim to any funds that the borrower has above a fixed "bankruptcy protection" level. Bankruptcy improves on non-exclusive contractual relationships but is not a perfect substitute for exclusivity ex ante. We characterize the effect ofdoi:10.2139/ssrn.250062 fatcat:6ytbio3dz5gvdbo7lyqwhmzam4