IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/bla/kyklos/v61y2008i3p425-446.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

Moral Hazard and Bail‐Out in Fiscal Federations: Evidence for the German Länder

Author

Listed:
  • Kirsten H. Heppke‐Falk
  • Guntram B. Wolff

Abstract

We identify investor moral hazard in the German fiscal federation. Our identification strategy is based on a variable, which was used by the German Federal Constitutional Court as an indicator to determine eligibility of two German states (Länder) to a bail‐out, the interest payments‐to‐revenue ratio. While risk premia measured in the German sub‐national bond market react significantly to the relative debt level of a state (Land), we also find that a larger interest payments‐to‐revenue ratio counter‐intuitively lowers risk premia significantly. Furthermore, with increasing values the risk premia decrease more strongly. This is evidence of investor moral hazard, because a larger indicator value increases the likelihood of receiving a bail‐out payment. Our findings are robust to a variety of sample changes. In addition, we provide a case study of the recent Federal Constitutional Court ruling on the Land Berlin, which had filed for additional federal funds. The negative response of the court did not lead to a change in financial markets' bail‐out expectations. In sum, our results indicate significant investor moral hazard in the sub‐national German bond market.

Suggested Citation

  • Kirsten H. Heppke‐Falk & Guntram B. Wolff, 2008. "Moral Hazard and Bail‐Out in Fiscal Federations: Evidence for the German Länder," Kyklos, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 61(3), pages 425-446, August.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:kyklos:v:61:y:2008:i:3:p:425-446
    DOI: 10.1111/j.1467-6435.2008.00411.x
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1467-6435.2008.00411.x
    Download Restriction: no

    File URL: https://libkey.io/10.1111/j.1467-6435.2008.00411.x?utm_source=ideas
    LibKey link: if access is restricted and if your library uses this service, LibKey will redirect you to where you can use your library subscription to access this item
    ---><---

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Lee, Jong-Wha & Shin, Kwanho, 2008. "IMF bailouts and moral hazard," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 27(5), pages 816-830, September.
    2. Edwin J. Elton & T. Clifton Green, 1998. "Tax and Liquidity Effects in Pricing Government Bonds," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 53(5), pages 1533-1562, October.
    3. Sanford J. Grossman & Merton H. Miller, 1988. "Liquidity and Market Structure," NBER Working Papers 2641, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    4. Hallerberg, Mark & Wolff, Guntram B., 2006. "Fiscal institutions, fiscal policy and sovereign risk premia," Discussion Paper Series 1: Economic Studies 2006,35, Deutsche Bundesbank.
    5. Michael J. Fleming, 2003. "Measuring treasury market liquidity," Economic Policy Review, Federal Reserve Bank of New York, issue Sep, pages 83-108.
    6. Gomez-Puig, Marta, 2006. "Size matters for liquidity: Evidence from EMU sovereign yield spreads," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 90(2), pages 156-162, February.
    7. Bayoumi, Tamim & Goldstein, Morris & Woglom, Geoffrey, 1995. "Do Credit Markets Discipline Sovereign Borrowers? Evidence from the U.S. States," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 27(4), pages 1046-1059, November.
    8. Schuknecht, Ludger & von Hagen, Jürgen & Bernoth, Kerstin, 2004. "Sovereign risk premia in the European government bond market," Working Paper Series 369, European Central Bank.
    9. Corsetti, Giancarlo & Pesenti, Paolo & Roubini, Nouriel, 1999. "Paper tigers?: A model of the Asian crisis," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 43(7), pages 1211-1236, June.
    10. Kerstin Bernoth & Guntram B. Wolff, 2008. "Fool The Markets? Creative Accounting, Fiscal Transparency And Sovereign Risk Premia," Scottish Journal of Political Economy, Scottish Economic Society, vol. 55(4), pages 465-487, September.
    11. Grossman, Sanford J & Miller, Merton H, 1988. " Liquidity and Market Structure," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 43(3), pages 617-637, July.
    12. Lorenzo Codogno & Carlo Favero & Alessandro Missale, 2003. "Yield spreads on EMU government bonds [‘Fiscal policy events and interest rate swap spreads: some evidence from the EU’]," Economic Policy, CEPR;CES;MSH, vol. 18(37), pages 503-532.
    13. Kerstin Bernoth & Guntram B. Wolff, 2008. "Fool The Markets? Creative Accounting, Fiscal Transparency And Sovereign Risk Premia," Scottish Journal of Political Economy, Scottish Economic Society, vol. 55(4), pages 465-487, September.
    14. Dell'Ariccia, Giovanni & Schnabel, Isabel & Zettelmeyer, Jeromin, 2006. "How Do Official Bailouts Affect the Risk of Investing in Emerging Markets?," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 38(7), pages 1689-1714, October.
    15. Seitz, Helmut, 2000. "Fiscal Policy, Deficits and Politics of Subnational Governments: The Case of the German Laender," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 102(3-4), pages 183-218, March.
    16. John M. Halstead & Shantaram Hegde & Linda Schmid Klein, 2004. "Orange County Bankruptcy: Financial Contagion in the Municipal Bond and Bank Equity Markets," The Financial Review, Eastern Finance Association, vol. 39(2), pages 293-315, May.
    17. Favero, Carlo A. & Giavazzi, Francesco, 2004. "Inflation Targeting and Debt: Lessons from Brazil," CEPR Discussion Papers 4376, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    18. Schulz, Alexander & Wolff, Guntram B., 2008. "The German sub-national government bond market: evolution, yields and liquidity," Discussion Paper Series 1: Economic Studies 2008,06, Deutsche Bundesbank.
    19. Bernoth, Kerstin & Schuknecht, Ludger & von Hagen, Jürgen, 2004. "Sovereign Risk Premia in the European Bond Market," CEPR Discussion Papers 4465, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    20. Mr. Timothy D. Lane & Mr. Steven T Phillips, 2000. "Does IMF Financing Result in Moral Hazard?," IMF Working Papers 2000/168, International Monetary Fund.
    21. Heppke-Falk, Kirsten H. & Hüfner, Felix P., 2004. "Expected budget deficits and interest rate swap spreads - Evidence for France, Germany and Italy," Discussion Paper Series 1: Economic Studies 2004,40, Deutsche Bundesbank.
    22. Capeci, John, 1994. "Local fiscal policies, default risk, and municipal borrowing costs," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 53(1), pages 73-89, January.
    23. Seitz, Helmut, 1999. "Subnational government bailouts in Germany," ZEI Working Papers B 20-1999, University of Bonn, ZEI - Center for European Integration Studies.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Most related items

    These are the items that most often cite the same works as this one and are cited by the same works as this one.
    1. Schulz Alexander & Wolff Guntram B., 2009. "The German Sub-national Government Bond Market: Structure, Determinants of Yield Spreads and Berlin’s Forgone Bail-out," Journal of Economics and Statistics (Jahrbuecher fuer Nationaloekonomie und Statistik), De Gruyter, vol. 229(1), pages 61-83, February.
    2. Kerstin Bernoth & Guntram B. Wolff, 2008. "Fool The Markets? Creative Accounting, Fiscal Transparency And Sovereign Risk Premia," Scottish Journal of Political Economy, Scottish Economic Society, vol. 55(4), pages 465-487, September.
    3. Bernoth, Kerstin & von Hagen, Jürgen & Schuknecht, Ludger, 2012. "Sovereign risk premiums in the European government bond market," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 31(5), pages 975-995.
    4. Van Hecke, Annelore, 2013. "Vertical debt spillovers in EMU countries," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 37(C), pages 468-492.
    5. Hallerberg, Mark & Wolff, Guntram B., 2006. "Fiscal institutions, fiscal policy and sovereign risk premia," Discussion Paper Series 1: Economic Studies 2006,35, Deutsche Bundesbank.
    6. Arghyrou, Michael G. & Kontonikas, Alexandros, 2012. "The EMU sovereign-debt crisis: Fundamentals, expectations and contagion," Journal of International Financial Markets, Institutions and Money, Elsevier, vol. 22(4), pages 658-677.
    7. Bernoth, Kerstin & Erdogan, Burcu, 2012. "Sovereign bond yield spreads: A time-varying coefficient approach," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 31(3), pages 639-656.
    8. Schuknecht, Ludger & von Hagen, Jürgen & Wolswijk, Guido, 2009. "Government risk premiums in the bond market: EMU and Canada," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 25(3), pages 371-384, September.
    9. Gerlach, Stefan & Schulz, Alexander & Wolff, Guntram B., 2010. "Banking and Sovereign Risk in the Euro Area," CEPR Discussion Papers 7833, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    10. van Riet, Ad, 2010. "Euro area fiscal policies and the crisis," Occasional Paper Series 109, European Central Bank.
    11. Christian Aßmann & Jens Boysen-Hogrefe, 2012. "Determinants of government bond spreads in the euro area: in good times as in bad," Empirica, Springer;Austrian Institute for Economic Research;Austrian Economic Association, vol. 39(3), pages 341-356, August.
    12. Mark Hallerberg & Guntram Wolff, 2008. "Fiscal institutions, fiscal policy and sovereign risk premia in EMU," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 136(3), pages 379-396, September.
    13. Gómez-Puig, Marta, 2008. "Monetary integration and the cost of borrowing," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 27(3), pages 455-479, April.
    14. Iara, Anna & Wolff, Guntram B., 2014. "Rules and risk in the Euro area," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 34(C), pages 222-236.
    15. Heinemann, Friedrich & Osterloh, Steffen & Kalb, Alexander, 2014. "Sovereign risk premia: The link between fiscal rules and stability culture," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 41(C), pages 110-127.
    16. Christiane Nickel & Philipp Rother & Jan-Christoph Ruelke, 2011. "Fiscal variables and bond spreads - evidence from Eastern European countries and Turkey," Applied Financial Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 21(17), pages 1291-1307.
    17. Attinasi, Maria Grazia & Checherita-Westphal, Cristina & Nickel, Christiane, 2009. "What explains the surge in euro area sovereign spreads during the financial crisis of 2007-09?," Working Paper Series 1131, European Central Bank.
    18. Oliveira, Luís & Curto, José Dias & Nunes, João Pedro, 2012. "The determinants of sovereign credit spread changes in the Euro-zone," Journal of International Financial Markets, Institutions and Money, Elsevier, vol. 22(2), pages 278-304.
    19. Igor Esteban Zuccardi Huertas, 2015. "Sovereign Spreads in the Eurozone: Is Market Discipline Working?," Working Papers 2015-20, Banco de México.
    20. Guntram B. Wolff & Alexander Schulz, 2008. "Sovereign bond market integration: the euro, trading platforms and globalisation," European Economy - Economic Papers 2008 - 2015 332, Directorate General Economic and Financial Affairs (DG ECFIN), European Commission.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • F34 - International Economics - - International Finance - - - International Lending and Debt Problems
    • H6 - Public Economics - - National Budget, Deficit, and Debt
    • H7 - Public Economics - - State and Local Government; Intergovernmental Relations
    • G14 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Information and Market Efficiency; Event Studies; Insider Trading
    • G15 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - International Financial Markets
    • E62 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook - - - Fiscal Policy

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:bla:kyklos:v:61:y:2008:i:3:p:425-446. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: . General contact details of provider: http://www.blackwellpublishing.com/journal.asp?ref=0023-5962 .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a bibliographic reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: Wiley Content Delivery (email available below). General contact details of provider: http://www.blackwellpublishing.com/journal.asp?ref=0023-5962 .

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.