Exit Expectations and Debt Crises in Currency Unions
Membership in a currency union is not irreversible. Exit expectations may emerge during sovereign debt crises, because exit allows countries to reduce their liabilities through a currency redenomination. As market participants anticipate this possibility, sovereign debt crises intensify. We establish this formally within a small open economy model of changing policy regimes. The model permits explosive dynamics of debt and sovereign yields inside currency unions and allows us to distinguish between exit expectations and those of an outright default. By estimating the model on Greek data, we quantify the contribution of exit expectations to the crisis dynamics during 2009 to 2012.
Slippery Slopes of Stress: Ordered Failure Events in German Banking
Journal of Financial Stability,
Outright bank failures without prior indication of financial instability are very rare. In fact, banks can be regarded as troubled to varying degrees before outright closure. But failure studies usually neglect the ordinal nature of bank distress. We distinguish four different kinds of increasingly severe events on the basis of the distress database of the Deutsche Bundesbank. Only the worst distress event entails a bank to exit the market. Since the four categories of hazard functions are not proportional, we specify a generalized ordered logit model to estimate respective probabilities of distress simultaneously. We find that the likelihood of ordered distress events changes differently in response to given changes in the financial profiles of banks. Consequently, bank failure studies should account more explicitly for the different shades of distress. This allows an assessment of the relative importance of financial profile components for different degrees of bank distress.
The Contestable Markets Theory - Efficient Advice for Economic Policy
During the nineties of the last century several formerly monopolistic markets (telecommunication, electricity, gas, and railway) have been deregulated in Germany based on European directives and theoretically inspired by the theory of contestable markets. The original contestable market theory implied three assumptions necessary to be satisfied to establish potential competition: Free market entry, market exit possible without any costs, and the price adjustment lag exceeding the entry lag. Our analysis shows that if the incumbent reduces its prices slowly (high adjustment lag) and the market entry can be performed quickly (low entry lag), a new competitor will be able to earn back sunk costs. Therefore it is not necessary that all three conditions be complied with for potential competition to exist. Applying this „revised“ contestable market theory to the deregulated sectors in Germany, natural monopolies can be identified in telecommunication sections local loops and local/regional connection networks, in the national electricity grid and the regional/local electricity distribution networks, in the national and regional/local gas transmission/distribution sections, and in the railroad network. These sections are not contestable due to sunk costs, expected high entry lags and a probably short price adjustment lag. They are identified as bottlenecks, which should be regulated. The function of system operators in energy and railroad are closely related to the non-contestable monopolistic networks.
A revised theory of contestable markets : applied on the German telecommunication sector
Despite the scepticism raised by the German Monopoly Commission our analysis shows that the revised theory of contestable markets can be applied to the telecommunications market better than expected. The original contestable market theory implied three assumptions necessary to be satisfied to establish potential competition: Free market entry, market exit is possible without any costs, and the price adjustment lag exceeds the entry lag. Our analysis shows that if the incumbent reduces its prices slowly (high adjustment lag) and the market entry can be performed quickly (low entry lag), a new competitor will be able to earn back sunk costs. Therefore it is not necessary that all three conditions are satisfied for potential competition to exist. We applied the ‘revised’ contestable market theory to the German telecommunication market and have been able to clearly identify the value added stages in which regulation is required. Under the present conditions local loops - which can be determined as natural monopolies - are not contestable due to sunk costs, high entry lags expected and a probable short price adjustment lag. Local loops can be identified as monopolistic bottlenecks therefore. Regional and local connection networks should also be regulated because a high entry lag and a low price adjustment lag have to be expected as well as current competition does not exist today. The national connection network shows current competition between several network providers; hence regulation can be abolished in this field. Assumed that network access is regulated, services can be supplied by several competing firms.