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Distance and International Banking

  • Claudia M. Buch

This paper asks how important distance is as a determinant of international banking and whether distance has become less important over time. If technological progress has lowered information costs and if information costs increase in distance, the importance of distance should have declined. I use data on assets and liabilities of commercial banks from five countries (France, Germany, Italy, UK, and US) in 50 host countries for the years 1983-99 to test this hypothesis. Generally, I find that banks hold significantly lower assets in distant markets and that the importance of distance for the foreign asset holdings of banks has not changed. Copyright Blackwell Publishing Ltd 2005.

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Article provided by Wiley Blackwell in its journal Review of International Economics.

Volume (Year): 13 (2005)
Issue (Month): 4 (09)
Pages: 787-804

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Handle: RePEc:bla:reviec:v:13:y:2005:i:4:p:787-804
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  1. Ahearne, Alan G. & Griever, William L. & Warnock, Francis E., 2004. "Information costs and home bias: an analysis of US holdings of foreign equities," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 62(2), pages 313-336, March.
  2. Levin, Andrew & Lin, Chien-Fu & James Chu, Chia-Shang, 2002. "Unit root tests in panel data: asymptotic and finite-sample properties," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 108(1), pages 1-24, May.
  3. Engle, Robert F & Granger, Clive W J, 1987. "Co-integration and Error Correction: Representation, Estimation, and Testing," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 55(2), pages 251-76, March.
  4. Baier, Scott L. & Bergstrand, Jeffrey H., 2001. "The growth of world trade: tariffs, transport costs, and income similarity," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 53(1), pages 1-27, February.
  5. Claudia M. Buch, 1999. "Why Do Banks Go Abroad? ; Evidence from German Data," Kiel Working Papers 948, Kiel Institute for the World Economy.
  6. John H. Boyd & Mark Gertler, 1994. "Are banks dead? Or are the reports greatly exaggerated?," Quarterly Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis, issue Sum, pages 2-23.
  7. Allen N. Berger & Anil K. Kashyap & Joseph M. Scalise, 1995. "The Transformation of the U.S. Banking Industry: What a Long, Strange Trips It's Been," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 26(2), pages 55-218.
  8. Pasaran, M.H. & Im, K.S. & Shin, Y., 1995. "Testing for Unit Roots in Heterogeneous Panels," Cambridge Working Papers in Economics 9526, Faculty of Economics, University of Cambridge.
  9. Eichengreen, Barry & Mody, Ashoka, 2000. "Lending booms, reserves and the sustainability of short-term debt: inferences from the pricing of syndicated bank loans," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 63(1), pages 5-44, October.
  10. Guillermo A. Calvo & Enrique G. Mendoza, 1999. "Regional Contagion and the Globalization of Securities Markets," NBER Working Papers 7153, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. Mitchell A. Petersen & Raghuram G. Rajan, 2000. "Does Distance Still Matter? The Information Revolution in Small Business Lending," NBER Working Papers 7685, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  12. Portes, Richard & Rey, Helene, 2005. "The determinants of cross-border equity flows," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 65(2), pages 269-296, March.
  13. Giovanni Dell'Ariccia, 1998. "Asymmetric Information and the Market Structure of the Banking Industry," IMF Working Papers 98/92, International Monetary Fund.
  14. Moshirian, Fariborz & Van der Laan, Alex, 1998. "Trade in financial services and the determinants of banks' foreign assets," Journal of Multinational Financial Management, Elsevier, vol. 8(1), pages 23-38, January.
  15. Dell'Ariccia, Giovanni, 2001. "Asymmetric information and the structure of the banking industry," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 45(10), pages 1957-1980, December.
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