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The Impact of Public Guarantees on Bank Risk Taking: Evidence from a Natural Experiment

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  • Gropp, R.
  • Grundl, C.
  • Guttler, A.

    (Tilburg University, Center for Economic Research)

Abstract

In 2001, government guarantees for savings banks in Germany were removed following a law suit. We use this natural experiment to examine the effect of government guarantees on bank risk taking, using a large data set of matched bank/borrower information. The results suggest that banks whose government guarantee was removed reduced credit risk by cutting off the riskiest borrowers from credit. At the same time, the banks also increased interest rates on their remaining borrowers. The effects are economically large: the Z-Score of average borrowers increased by 7% and the average loan size declined by 13%. Remaining borrowers paid 57 basis points higher interest rates, despite their higher quality. Using a difference-in-differences approach we show that the effect is larger for banks that ex ante benefitted more from the guarantee. We show that both the credit quality of new customers improved (screening) and that the loans of existing riskier borrowers were less likely to be renewed (monitoring), after the removal of public guarantees. Public guarantees seem to be associated with substantial moral hazard effects.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Tilburg University, Center for Economic Research in its series Discussion Paper with number 2010-69S.

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Date of creation: 2010
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Handle: RePEc:dgr:kubcen:201069s

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Web page: http://center.uvt.nl

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Keywords: banking; public guarantees; credit risk; moral hazard;

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References

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  1. Emilia Bonaccorsi Di Patti & Giorgio Gobbi, 2007. "Winners or Losers? The Effects of Banking Consolidation on Corporate Borrowers," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 62(2), pages 669-695, 04.
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Cited by:
  1. Panetta, Fabio & Correa, Ricardo & Davies, Michael & Di Cesare, Antonio & Marques, José-Manuel & Nadal de Simone, Francisco & Signoretti, Federico & Vespro, Cristina & Vildo, Siret & Wieland, Martin , 2011. "The impact of sovereign credit risk on bank funding conditions," MPRA Paper 32581, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  2. Lars Norden & Martin Weber, 2010. "Funding Modes of German Banks: Structural Changes and their Implications," Journal of Financial Services Research, Springer, vol. 38(2), pages 69-93, December.
  3. H. Evren Damar & Reint Gropp & Adi Mordel, 2012. "The Ex-Ante Versus Ex-Post Effect of Public Guarantees," Working Papers 12-22, Bank of Canada.
  4. Schnabel, Isabel & Körner, Tobias, 2012. "Abolishing Public Guarantees in the Absence of Market Discipline," Annual Conference 2012 (Goettingen): New Approaches and Challenges for the Labor Market of the 21st Century 65401, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
  5. Berger, Allen N. & Bouwman, Christa H.S., 2013. "How does capital affect bank performance during financial crises?," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 109(1), pages 146-176.

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