Bank ratings: what determines their quality?
AbstractThis paper examines the quality of credit ratings assigned to banks in Europe and the United States by the three largest rating agencies over the past two decades. We interpret credit ratings as relative assessments of creditworthiness, and define a new ordinal metric of rating error based on banks’ expected default frequencies. Our results suggest that rating agencies assign more positive ratings to large banks and to those institutions more likely to provide the rating agency with additional securities rating business (as indicated by private structured credit origination activity). These competitive distortions are economically significant and contribute to perpetuate the existence of ‘too-big-to-fail’ banks. We also show that, overall, differential risk weights recommended by the Basel accords for investment grade banks bear no significant relationship to empirical default probabilities. JEL Classification: G21, G23, G28
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by European Central Bank in its series Working Paper Series with number 1484.
Date of creation: Oct 2012
Date of revision:
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Other versions of this item:
- E44 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Money and Interest Rates - - - Financial Markets and the Macroeconomy
- G21 - Financial Economics - - Financial Institutions and Services - - - Banks; Other Depository Institutions; Micro Finance Institutions; Mortgages
- G23 - Financial Economics - - Financial Institutions and Services - - - Non-bank Financial Institutions; Financial Instruments; Institutional Investors
- G28 - Financial Economics - - Financial Institutions and Services - - - Government Policy and Regulation
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2012-11-11 (All new papers)
- NEP-BAN-2012-11-11 (Banking)
- NEP-EEC-2012-11-11 (European Economics)
- NEP-REG-2012-11-11 (Regulation)
- NEP-RMG-2012-11-11 (Risk Management)
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
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- Jeon, Doh-Shin & Lovo, Stefano, 2013. "Credit Rating Industry: a Helicopter Tour of Stylized Facts and Recent Theories," IDEI Working Papers 762, Institut d'Économie Industrielle (IDEI), Toulouse.
- Jeon, Doh-Shin & Lovo, Stefano, 2013. "Credit Rating Industry: a Helicopter Tour of Stylized Facts and Recent Theories," TSE Working Papers 13-376, Toulouse School of Economics (TSE).
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