The Impact of Public Guarantees on Bank Risk-taking: Evidence from a Natural Experiment
Review of Finance,
In 2001, government guarantees for savings banks in Germany were removed following a lawsuit. We use this natural experiment to examine the effect of government guarantees on bank risk-taking. The results suggest that banks whose government guarantee was removed reduced credit risk by cutting off the riskiest borrowers from credit. Using a difference-in-differences approach we show that none of these effects are present in a control group of German banks to whom the guarantee was not applicable. Furthermore, savings banks adjusted their liabilities away from risk-sensitive debt instruments after the removal of the guarantee, while we do not observe this for the control group. We also document that yield spreads of savings banks’ bonds increased significantly right after the announcement of the decision to remove guarantees, while the yield spread of a sample of bonds issued by the control group remained unchanged. The evidence implies that public guarantees may be associated with substantial moral hazard effects.
Flight Patterns and Yields of European Government Bonds
IWH Discussion Papers,
The current European Debt Crisis has led to a reinforced effort to identify the sources of risk and their influence on yields of European Government Bonds. Until now, the potentially nonlinear influence and the theoretical need for interactions reflecting flight-to-quality and flight-to-liquidity has been widely disregarded. I estimate government bond yields of the Euro-12 countries without Luxembourg from May 2003 until December 2011. Using penalized spline regression, I find that the effect of most explanatory variables is highly nonlinear. These nonlinearities, together with flight patterns of flight-to-quality and flight-to-liquidity, can explain the co-movement of bond yields until September 2008 and the huge amount of differentiation during the financial and the European debt crisis without the unnecessary assumption of a structural break. The main effects are credit risk and flight-to-liquidity, while the evidence for the existence of flight-to-quality and liquidity risk (the latter measured by the bid-ask spread and total turnover of bonds) is comparably weak.
Foreign Bank Entry, Credit Allocation and Lending Rates in Emerging Markets: Empirical Evidence from Poland
Journal of Banking & Finance,
Earlier studies have documented that foreign banks charge lower lending rates and interest spreads than domestic banks. We hypothesize that this may stem from the superior efficiency of foreign entrants that they decide to pass onto borrowers (“performance hypothesis”), but could also reflect a different loan allocation with respect to borrower transparency, loan maturity and currency (“portfolio composition hypothesis”). We are able to differentiate between the above hypotheses thanks to a novel dataset containing detailed bank-specific information for the Polish banking industry. Our findings demonstrate that banks differ significantly in terms of portfolio composition and we attest to the “portfolio composition hypothesis” by showing that, having controlled for portfolio composition, there are no differences in lending rates between banks.
What Can Currency Crisis Models Tell Us about the Risk of Withdrawal from the EMU? Evidence from ADR Data
Journal of Common Market Studies,
We study whether ADR (American depositary receipt) investors perceive the risk that countries such as Greece, Ireland, Italy, Portugal or Spain could leave the eurozone to address financial problems produced by the sub-prime crisis. Using daily data, we analyse the impact of vulnerability measures related to currency crisis theories on ADR returns. We find that ADR returns fall when yield spreads of sovereign bonds or CDSs (credit default swaps) rise (i.e. when debt crisis risk increases); when banks' CDS premiums rise or stock returns fall (i.e. when banking crisis risk increases); or when the euro's overvaluation increases (i.e. when the risk of competitive devaluation increases).
Crisis Contagion in Central and Eastern Europe
Wirtschaft im Wandel,
The global financial crisis reached the Central and Eastern European region. Fears of a recession are spreading among investors in Russia and the Ukraine due to the heavy decline of oil and steel prices and provoked a first wave of short-term capital withdrawals. The export sector of all countries in the region is affected by weakening global demand. Finally, the financial sector, which is dominated by international banks in almost all countries, appears as the contagion channel for risk adjustments of mother banks. The combined impact of all these causes and channels lead to a proliferation of restrictions in credit and money supply and an outflow of investment capital. A strong weakening of economic growth is on the way in the region, and a long-lasting recession seems possible in some countries, in first line in the Baltic countries. It becomes a superior task of governments to ease the length and depth of the approaching recession by a strong fiscal stimulus. A continuation of the present policy of fiscal consolidation or of nominal convergence toward a quick adoption of the Euro does not seem very advisable. If governments decided to support domestic demand, measures should be taken to strengthening of a genuinely domestic banking sector in order to maintain credit availability.
Why do we have an interbank money market?
IWH Discussion Papers,
The interbank money market plays a key role in the execution of monetary policy. Hence, it is important to know the functioning of this market and the determinants of the interbank money market rate. In this paper, we develop an interbank money market model with a heterogeneous banking sector. We show that besides for balancing daily liquidity fluctuations banks participate in the interbank market because they have different marginal costs of obtaining funds from the central bank. In the euro area, which we refer to, these cost differences occur because banks have different marginal cost of collateral which they need to hold to obtain funds from the central bank. Banks with relatively low marginal costs act as intermediaries between the central bank and banks with relatively high marginal costs. The necessary positive spread between the interbank market rate and the central bank rate is determined by transaction costs and credit risk in the interbank market, total liquidity needs of the banking sector, costs of obtaining funds from the central bank, and the distribution of the latter across banks.