06.07.2015 • 27/2015
Rejection of Reforms as a Chance for Reforms
The President of the Halle Institute for Economic Research (IWH) – Member of the Leibniz Association continues to see a chance for an agreement between the European Union (EU) and Greece. On the surface, Grexit looks now more likely than ever. But the resignation of Yanis Varoufakis, Minister of Finance, and the outcome of the referendum may also provide a chance for the Greek government to agree on reforms and save face. But the window of opportunity is closing very fast.
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Welche Risikomaße bilden das Ausfallrisiko für Geschäftsbanken adäquat ab? Eine Analyse am Beispiel US-amerikanischer Banken
Wirtschaft im Wandel,
Zur Analyse von Risiken im Bankensystem und möglichen Ausfallrisiken von Banken werden verschiedene Maße verwendet, die sowohl auf Bankbilanzdaten als auch auf der Gewinn- und Verlustrechnung von Banken beruhen. Diese Studie vergleicht häufig verwendete Risikomaße für Geschäftsbanken in den USA im Zeitraum von 1995 bis 2013. Es zeigt sich, dass alle getesteten Maße in der Lage sind, das während der Finanzkrise von 2007 bis 2009 stark angestiegene Risiko im US-Bankensystem abzubilden. Zur Prognose einer Bankinsolvenz erweist sich der einfach zu berechnende Anteil an notleidenden Vermögenswerten in der Bilanz als eine gute Ergänzung zu komplexeren Risikomaßen wie dem Z-score.
Cross-border Interbank Networks, Banking Risk and Contagion
Journal of Financial Stability,
Recent events have highlighted the role of cross-border linkages between banking systems in transmitting local developments across national borders. This paper analyzes whether international linkages in interbank markets affect the stability of interconnected banking systems and channel financial distress within a network consisting of banking systems of the main advanced countries for the period 1994–2012. Methodologically, I use a spatial modeling approach to test for spillovers in cross-border interbank markets. The results suggest that foreign exposures in banking play a significant role in channeling banking risk: I find that countries that are linked through foreign borrowing or lending positions to more stable banking systems abroad are significantly affected by positive spillover effects. From a policy point of view, this implies that in stable times, linkages in the banking system can be beneficial, while they have to be taken with caution in times of financial turmoil affecting the whole system.
Financial Stability and Central Bank Governance
International Journal of Central Banking,
The financial crisis has ignited a debate about the appropriate objectives and the governance structure of Central Banks. We use novel survey data to investigate the relation between these traits and banking system stability focusing in particular on their role in micro-prudential supervision. We find that the separation of powers between single and multiple bank supervisors cannot explain credit risk prior or during the financial crisis. Similarly, a large number of Central Bank governance traits do not correlate with system fragility. Only the objective of currency stability exhibits a significant relation with non-performing loan levels in the run-up to the crisis. This effect is amplified for those countries with most frequent exposure to IMF missions in the past. Our results suggest that the current policy discussion whether to centralize prudential supervision under the Central Bank and the ensuing institutional changes some countries are enacting may not produce the improvements authorities are aiming at. Whether other potential improvements in prudential supervision due to, for example, external disciplinary devices, such as IMF conditional lending schemes, are better suited to increase financial stability requires further research.
Should I Stay or Should I Go? Bank Productivity and Internationalization Decisions
Journal of Banking & Finance,
Differences in firm-level productivity explain international activities of non-financial firms quite well. We test whether differences in bank productivity determine international activities of banks. Based on a dataset that allows tracking banks across countries and across different modes of foreign entry, we model the ordered probability of maintaining a commercial presence abroad and the volume of banks’ international assets empirically. Our research has three main findings. First, more productive banks are more likely to enter foreign markets in increasingly complex modes. Second, more productive banks also hold larger volumes of foreign assets. Third, higher risk aversion renders entry less likely, but it increases the volume of foreign activities conditional upon entry.
Interbank Lending and Distress: Observables, Unobservables, and Network Structure
Deutsche Bundesbank Discussion Paper, No. 18/2014,
We provide empirical evidence on the relevance of systemic risk through the interbank lending channel. We adapt a spatial probit model that allows for correlated error terms in the cross-sectional variation that depend on the measured network connections of the banks. The latter are in our application observed interbank exposures among German bank holding companies during 2001 and 2006. The results clearly indicate significant spillover effects between banks’ probabilities of distress and the financial profiles of connected peers. Better capitalized and managed connections reduce the banks own risk. Higher network centrality reduces the probability of distress, supporting the notion that more complete networks tend to be more stable. Finally, spatial autocorrelation is significant and negative. This last result may indicate too-many-to-fail mechanics such that bank distress is less likely if many peers already experienced distress.