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Precautionary Hoarding of Liquidity and Inter-Bank Markets: Evidence from the Sub-prime Crisis

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  • Viral V. Acharya
  • Ouarda Merrouche

Abstract

We study the liquidity demand of large settlement banks in the UK and its effect on the Sterling Money Markets before and during the sub-prime crisis of 2007-08. Liquidity holdings of large settlement banks experienced on average a 30% increase in the period immediately following 9th August, 2007, the day when money markets froze, igniting the crisis. Following this structural break, settlement bank liquidity had a precautionary nature in that it rose on calendar days with a large amount of payment activity and more so for weaker banks. We establish that the liquidity demand by settlement banks caused overnight inter-bank rates to rise, an effect virtually absent in the pre-crisis period. This liquidity effect on inter-bank rates occurred in both unsecured borrowing as well as borrowing secured by UK government bonds. Further, the effect was experienced by all settlement banks, regardless of their credit risk, suggestive of an interest-rate contagion from weaker to stronger banks operating through the inter-bank markets.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 16395.

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Date of creation: Sep 2010
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Publication status: published as Viral V. Acharya & Ouarda Merrouche, 2013. "Precautionary Hoarding of Liquidity and Interbank Markets: Evidence from the Subprime Crisis," Review of Finance, European Finance Association, vol. 17(1), pages 107-160.
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:16395

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  1. Acharya, Viral V & Skeie, David, 2011. "A Model of Liquidity Hoarding and Term Premia in Inter-Bank Markets," CEPR Discussion Papers 8705, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  2. Fecht, Falko & Nyborg, Kjell G. & Rocholl, Jörg, 2008. "The price of liquidity: bank characteristics and market conditions," Discussion Paper Series 1: Economic Studies 2008,30, Deutsche Bundesbank, Research Centre.
  3. Bindseil, Ulrich & Nyborg, Kjell G. & Strebulaev, Ilya A., 2005. "Bidding and Performance in Repo Auctions: Evidence from ECB Open Market Operations," Discussion Papers 2005/13, Department of Business and Management Science, Norwegian School of Economics.
  4. Viral V. Acharya & Denis Gromb & Tanju Yorulmazer, 2012. "Imperfect Competition in the Interbank Market for Liquidity as a Rationale for Central Banking," American Economic Journal: Macroeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 4(2), pages 184-217, April.
  5. Gara Afonso & Anna Kovner & Antoinette Schoar, 2010. "Stressed not Frozen: The Fed Funds Market in the Financial Crisis," NBER Working Papers 15806, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Viral V. Acharya & Hyun Song Shin & Tanju Yorulmazer, 2009. "Crisis Resolution and Bank Liquidity," NBER Working Papers 15567, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Viral V. Acharya & Philipp Schnabl & Gustavo Suarez, 2010. "Securitization without risk transfer," NBER Working Papers 15730, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Adam Ashcraft & James Mcandrews & David Skeie, 2011. "Precautionary Reserves and the Interbank Market," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 43, pages 311-348, October.
  9. Ulrich Bindseil & Kjell G. Nyborg & Ilya A. Strebulaev, 2009. "Repo Auctions and the Market for Liquidity," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 41(7), pages 1391-1421, October.
  10. Olivier Armantier & Eric Ghysels & Asani Sarkar & Jeffrey Shrader, 2011. "Stigma in financial markets: evidence from liquidity auctions and discount window borrowing during the crisis," Staff Reports 483, Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
  11. Gara Afonso & Anna Kovner & Antoinette Schoar, 2011. "Stressed, Not Frozen: The Federal Funds Market in the Financial Crisis," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 66(4), pages 1109-1139, 08.
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