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Risk taking behavior of privatized banks

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  • Mohsni, Sana
  • Otchere, Isaac

Abstract

We examine the risk taking behavior of privatized banks prior to and after privatization and find that privatized banks experience a significant decrease in risk after privatization; however they continue to exhibit higher risk than their rivals. This finding is consistent with the assertion that following privatization and the removal of government guarantees and subsidies, privatized banks become more prudent. Since rival banks do not experience a significant change in risk taking, we attribute the reduction in risk experienced by the privatized banks to changes in the banks' ownership structure rather than to industry factors. Interestingly, we also find that a higher fraction of the privatized banks' shares sold beyond a certain intermediate level induces higher risk taking, as the privatized bank becomes more accountable to shareholders. The finding that the fraction of shares sold is positively related to risk taking, coupled with the result that the privatized banks had higher risk in the pre-privatization period than in the post-privatization period suggests a nonlinear relationship between government/private ownership of banks and risk taking. Results of further analysis are consistent with a somewhat U-shaped relationship between private ownership and risk taking. The risk taking behavior of newly privatized banks is also influenced by the country's level of development and degree of political risk. Our results are robust to different measures of risk.

Suggested Citation

  • Mohsni, Sana & Otchere, Isaac, 2014. "Risk taking behavior of privatized banks," Journal of Corporate Finance, Elsevier, vol. 29(C), pages 122-142.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:corfin:v:29:y:2014:i:c:p:122-142
    DOI: 10.1016/j.jcorpfin.2014.07.007
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    1. repec:eee:riibaf:v:42:y:2017:i:c:p:532-543 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. Liu, Yi & Li, Xue & Lahiri, Sajal, 2016. "Determinants of privatization in China: The role of the presence of foreign firms," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 41(C), pages 196-221.
    3. Cheng, Maoyong & Geng, Hongyan & Zhang, Junrui, 2016. "Chinese commercial banks: Benefits from foreign strategic investors?," Pacific-Basin Finance Journal, Elsevier, vol. 40(PA), pages 147-172.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Banks; Privatization; Risk taking; z-Score;

    JEL classification:

    • G21 - Financial Economics - - Financial Institutions and Services - - - Banks; Other Depository Institutions; Micro Finance Institutions; Mortgages
    • G28 - Financial Economics - - Financial Institutions and Services - - - Government Policy and Regulation
    • G32 - Financial Economics - - Corporate Finance and Governance - - - Financing Policy; Financial Risk and Risk Management; Capital and Ownership Structure; Value of Firms; Goodwill

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