Effectiveness and (In)Efficiencies of Compensation Regulation: Evidence from the EU Banker Bonus Cap
IWH Discussion Papers,
We study if the regulation of bank executive compensation has unintended consequences. Based on novel data on CEO and non-CEO executives in EU banking, we show that capping the variable-to-fixed compensation ratio did not induce executives to abandon the industry. Banks indemnified executives sufficiently for the shock to retain them by raising fixed and lowering variable compensation while complying with the cap. At the same time, banks‘ risk-adjusted performance deteriorated due to increased idiosyncratic risk. Collateral damage for the financial system as a whole appears modest though, as average co-movement of banks with the market declined under the cap.
19.04.2018 • 7/2018
Joint Economic Forecast Spring 2018: Germany’s Economic Experts Raise Forecast Slightly
Berlin, 19 April – Germany’s leading economic experts raised their forecasts for 2018 and 2019 slightly in their Spring Joint Economic Forecast released on Thursday in Berlin. They now expect economic growth of 2.2 percent for this year and 2.0 percent for 2019, versus 2.0 percent and 1.8 percent respectively in their autumn forecast. “The German economy is still booming, but the air is getting thinner as unused capacities are shrinking“, notes Timo Wollmershaeuser, ifo Head of Economic Forecasting. Commenting on the new German government’s economic policy, he adds: “It is precisely when the government’s coffers are full that fiscal policy should reflect the implications of its actions for overall economic stability and the sustainability of public finances. The extension of statutory pension benefits outlined in the coalition agreement runs counter to the idea of sustainability.”
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21.03.2018 • 5/2018
What is holding back the banking union?
The European Commission wants to better regulate and monitor the European banking sector. In many EU Member States, however, the necessary directives are being implemented extremely slowly. Surprisingly, the reasons for this do not lie in politics and banking structures, but in the institutional framework conditions and existing regulations in the Member States, as argued by Michael Koetter, Thomas Krause and Lena Tonzer from the Halle Institute for Economic Research (IWH).
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Big Fish in Small Banking Ponds? Cost Advantages and Foreign Affiliate Presences
Journal of International Money and Finance,
We distinguish cost advantage at home from cost advantage vis-à-vis incumbent banks in destination markets to explain the probability of foreign bank affiliate lending. We combine detailed affiliate lending data of all German banks with public bank micro data from 59 destination markets. The likelihood to operate foreign affiliates depends positively on both types of cost advantage. Only cost advantage at home is economically significant. Generally, risk, return, and unobservable bank traits explain a larger share of the variation in foreign affiliate operations. Less profitable, more risky, and larger banks are more likely to operate affiliates abroad.
Comments on “Consultation BCBS discussion paper on the regulatory treatment of sovereign exposures”
The BCBS discussion paper on the regulatory treatment of sovereign exposures addresses a so far hardly touched topic as concerns capital regulation. While the regulatory framework has been changed substantially over recent years including the establishment of the European Banking Union, risk weights on sovereign exposures have remained mostly unchanged and sovereign exposures of banks benefit from a favourable capital treatment. This applies despite the fact that the recent European sovereign debt crisis has revealed the potential of a doom loop between bank and sovereign risk and demonstrated that sovereign exposures are by no means “risk-free”. The paper is thus an important proposal how to change the risk evaluation of banks’ sovereign exposures.
Can Lenders Discern Managerial Ability from Luck? Evidence from Bank Loan Contracts
Journal of Banking & Finance,
We investigate the effect of managerial ability versus luck on bank loan contracting. Borrowers showing a persistently superior managerial ability over previous years (more likely due to ability) enjoy a lower loan spread, while borrowers showing a temporary superior managerial ability (more likely due to luck) do not enjoy any spread reduction. This finding suggests that banks can discern ability from luck when pricing a loan. Firms with high-ability managers are more likely to continue their prior lower loan spread. The spread-reduction effect of managerial ability is stronger for firms with weak governance structures or poor stakeholder relationships, corroborating the notion that better managerial ability alleviates borrowers’ agency and information risks. We also find that well governed banks are better able to price governance into their borrowers’ loans, which helps explain why good governance enhances bank value.
Does It Pay to Get Connected? An Examination of Bank Alliance Network and Bond Spread
Journal of Economics and Business,
This paper examines the effects of bank alliance network on bonds issued by European banks during the period 1990–2009. We construct six measures capturing different dimensions of banks’ network characteristics. In opposition to the results obtained for non-financial firms, our findings indicate that being part of a network does not create value for bank’s bondholders, indicating a dark side effect of strategic alliances in the banking sector. While being part of a network is perceived as a risk-increasing event by market participants, this negative perception is significantly lower for the larger banks, and, to a lesser extent, for the more profitable banks. Moreover, during crisis times, the positive impact on bond spread of a bank’s higher centrality or of a bank’s higher connectedness in the network is stronger, indicating that market participants may fear spillover effects within the network during periods of banks’ heightened financial fragility.
14.12.2017 • 39/2017
Cyclical upswing in Germany and in the world
At the turn of the year, the cyclical upswing in Germany continues. Gross domestic product is expected to increase by 2.2% in 2017, and because this year has seen significantly fewer working days than before, the rate of change amounts, adjusted for calendar effects, to even 2.5%. “The upswing is broad-based”, says Oliver Holtemöller, head of the Department Macroeconomics and IWH vice president. “For quite a long time now, significant increases in employment have been driving private incomes, consumption and housing construction. The latter was, in addition, stimulated by low interest rates.” Currently, German exports are benefiting from the vivid international economy. Not least since monetary policy in the euro area remains expansionary for the time being, we expect the upturn to continue in 2018 and production to increase again by 2.2%. Consumer price inflation is, with 1.7%, still moderate in both 2017 and 2018. Although domestic price pressures are on the rise, the effects of the energy price increase in 2017 expire in 2018, and the appreciation of the euro in the summer of 2017 will dampen price dynamics.
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01.11.2017 • 38/2017
IWH Policy Talk „Risk Sharing and Risk Reduction – The Challenges that Lie Ahead“
The Halle Institute for Economic Research (IWH) – Member of the Leibniz Association is pleased to inform about its next upcoming IWH Policy Talk „Risk Sharing and Risk Reduction – The Challenges that Lie Ahead“ with Andrea Enria, first Chairperson of the European Banking Authority (EBA). The talk will take place on Tuesday, No¬vember 7, 2017, 5:00 p.m., in the IWH conference room. You are hereby cordially invited to attend.
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Nationale Aufsicht versus Europäische Bankenunion: Unterscheidet sich die Beurteilung der Einflussfaktoren systemischen Risikos von Banken?
Wirtschaft im Wandel,
Als Reaktion auf die Finanzkrise unterliegt das Finanzsystem zahlreichen neuen regulatorischen Änderungen. Zum einen wurden bestehende mikroprudenzielle Regeln für Eigenkapital und Liquidität verschärft. Zum anderen wurden makroprudenzielle Instrumente eingeführt. Makroprudenzielle Regulierung hat dabei zum Ziel, systemische Risiken im Finanzsystem frühzeitig zu erkennen, zu reduzieren und somit die Finanzmarktstabilität zu erhöhen. Zudem wurde mit der Einführung der Bankenunion die Aufsicht der größten Banken des Euroraums der Europäischen Zentralbank (EZB) übertragen. Diese Studie untersucht, ob das systemische Risiko von Banken unterschiedlich groß ist, wenn eine europäische im Vergleich zu einer nationalen Perspektive eingenommen wird. Im Anschluss wird die Frage geklärt, welche Faktoren systemisches Risiko beeinflussen und ob sich diese Faktoren zwischen der nationalen und europäischen Ebene unterscheiden. Es zeigt sich, dass Banken auf nationaler Ebene im Durchschnitt etwas mehr zum systemischen Risiko beitragen, wobei es große Unterschiede zwischen Banken und Ländern gibt. Zudem haben größere und profitablere Banken sowie Banken, deren Geschäftsmodell durch eine geringere Kreditvergabe geprägt ist, ein höheres systemisches Risiko.