IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/eee/empfin/v15y2008i4p583-612.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

Firm heterogeneity and credit risk diversification

Author

Listed:
  • Hanson, Samuel G.
  • Pesaran, M. Hashem
  • Schuermann, Til

Abstract

This paper examines the impact of neglected heterogeneity on credit risk. We show that neglecting heterogeneity in firm returns and/or default thresholds leads to underestimation of expected losses (EL), and its effect on portfolio risk is ambiguous. Once EL is controlled for, the impact of neglecting parameter heterogeneity is complex and depends on the source and degree of heterogeneity. We show that ignoring differences in default thresholds results in overestimation of risk, while ignoring differences in return correlations yields ambiguous results. Our empirical application, designed to be typical and representative, combines both and shows that neglected heterogeneity results in overestimation of risk. Using a portfolio of U.S. firms we illustrate that heterogeneity in the default threshold or probability of default, measured for instance by a credit rating, is of first order importance in affecting the shape of the loss distribution: including ratings heterogeneity alone results in a 20% drop in loss volatility and a 40% drop in 99.9% VaR, the level to which the risk weights of the New Basel Accord are calibrated.

Suggested Citation

  • Hanson, Samuel G. & Pesaran, M. Hashem & Schuermann, Til, 2008. "Firm heterogeneity and credit risk diversification," Journal of Empirical Finance, Elsevier, vol. 15(4), pages 583-612, September.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:empfin:v:15:y:2008:i:4:p:583-612
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0927-5398(07)00115-6
    Download Restriction: Full text for ScienceDirect subscribers only
    ---><---

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version below or search for a different version of it.

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Stephen A. Ross, 2013. "The Arbitrage Theory of Capital Asset Pricing," World Scientific Book Chapters, in: Leonard C MacLean & William T Ziemba (ed.), HANDBOOK OF THE FUNDAMENTALS OF FINANCIAL DECISION MAKING Part I, chapter 1, pages 11-30, World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd..
    2. Duffie, Darrell & Saita, Leandro & Wang, Ke, 2007. "Multi-period corporate default prediction with stochastic covariates," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 83(3), pages 635-665, March.
    3. Gordy, Michael B., 2000. "A comparative anatomy of credit risk models," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 24(1-2), pages 119-149, January.
    4. Lucas, Andre & Klaassen, Pieter & Spreij, Peter & Straetmans, Stefan, 2001. "An analytic approach to credit risk of large corporate bond and loan portfolios," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 25(9), pages 1635-1664, September.
    5. Pesaran, M. Hashem & Schuermann, Til & Treutler, Bjorn-Jakob & Weiner, Scott M., 2006. "Macroeconomic Dynamics and Credit Risk: A Global Perspective," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 38(5), pages 1211-1261, August.
    6. Leland, Hayne E & Toft, Klaus Bjerre, 1996. "Optimal Capital Structure, Endogenous Bankruptcy, and the Term Structure of Credit Spreads," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 51(3), pages 987-1019, July.
    7. Jafry, Yusuf & Schuermann, Til, 2004. "Measurement, estimation and comparison of credit migration matrices," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 28(11), pages 2603-2639, November.
    8. Harris, William L. & Peyrot, Mark & Fenzel, L. Mickey & Burbridge, John J., 1997. "Electronic distribution of public assistance benefits: System performance and stakeholder opinions," Evaluation and Program Planning, Elsevier, vol. 20(4), pages 393-403, November.
    9. Jushan Bai & Serena Ng, 2002. "Determining the Number of Factors in Approximate Factor Models," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 70(1), pages 191-221, January.
    10. Lennox, Clive, 1999. "Identifying failing companies: a re-evaluation of the logit, probit and DA approaches," Journal of Economics and Business, Elsevier, vol. 51(4), pages 347-364, July.
    11. Sanjiv R. Das & Darrell Duffie & Nikunj Kapadia & Leandro Saita, 2007. "Common Failings: How Corporate Defaults Are Correlated," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 62(1), pages 93-117, February.
    12. Black, Fischer & Cox, John C, 1976. "Valuing Corporate Securities: Some Effects of Bond Indenture Provisions," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 31(2), pages 351-367, May.
    13. Merton, Robert C, 1974. "On the Pricing of Corporate Debt: The Risk Structure of Interest Rates," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 29(2), pages 449-470, May.
    14. Robert A. Jarrow & David Lando & Fan Yu, 2008. "Default Risk And Diversification: Theory And Empirical Implications," World Scientific Book Chapters, in: Financial Derivatives Pricing Selected Works of Robert Jarrow, chapter 19, pages 455-480, World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd..
    15. Chamberlain, Gary & Rothschild, Michael, 1983. "Arbitrage, Factor Structure, and Mean-Variance Analysis on Large Asset Markets," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 51(5), pages 1281-1304, September.
    16. Zhou, Chunsheng, 2001. "An Analysis of Default Correlations and Multiple Defaults," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 14(2), pages 555-576.
    17. Hanson, Samuel & Schuermann, Til, 2006. "Confidence intervals for probabilities of default," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 30(8), pages 2281-2301, August.
    18. Joost Driessen, 2005. "Is Default Event Risk Priced in Corporate Bonds?," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 18(1), pages 165-195.
    19. Duffie, Darrell & Lando, David, 2001. "Term Structures of Credit Spreads with Incomplete Accounting Information," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 69(3), pages 633-664, May.
    20. Gordy, Michael B., 2003. "A risk-factor model foundation for ratings-based bank capital rules," Journal of Financial Intermediation, Elsevier, vol. 12(3), pages 199-232, July.
    21. Ke Wang & Darrell Duffie, 2004. "Multi-Period Corporate Failure Prediction With Stochastic Covariates," Econometric Society 2004 Far Eastern Meetings 747, Econometric Society.
    22. Mella-Barral, Pierre & Perraudin, William, 1997. "Strategic Debt Service," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 52(2), pages 531-556, June.
    23. Maria Vassalou & Yuhang Xing, 2004. "Default Risk in Equity Returns," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 59(2), pages 831-868, April.
    24. Kenneth D. Garbade, 2001. "Pricing Corporate Securities as Contingent Claims," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262072238, February.
    25. Yu, Fan, 2005. "Accounting transparency and the term structure of credit spreads," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 75(1), pages 53-84, January.
    26. Edward I. Altman, 1968. "Financial Ratios, Discriminant Analysis And The Prediction Of Corporate Bankruptcy," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 23(4), pages 589-609, September.
    27. M. Davis & V. Lo, 2001. "Infectious defaults," Quantitative Finance, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 1(4), pages 382-387.
    28. Shumway, Tyler, 2001. "Forecasting Bankruptcy More Accurately: A Simple Hazard Model," The Journal of Business, University of Chicago Press, vol. 74(1), pages 101-124, January.
    29. Crouhy, Michel & Galai, Dan & Mark, Robert, 2000. "A comparative analysis of current credit risk models," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 24(1-2), pages 59-117, January.
    30. Duffie, Darrell, 2005. "Credit risk modeling with affine processes," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 29(11), pages 2751-2802, November.
    31. Lando, David & Skodeberg, Torben M., 2002. "Analyzing rating transitions and rating drift with continuous observations," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 26(2-3), pages 423-444, March.
    32. Jon Frye, 2000. "Depressing recoveries," Emerging Issues, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, issue Oct.
    33. Mark Broadie & Mikhail Chernov & Suresh Sundaresan, 2007. "Optimal Debt and Equity Values in the Presence of Chapter 7 and Chapter 11," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 62(3), pages 1341-1377, June.
    34. Stefan Weber & Kay Giesecke, 2003. "Credit Contagion and Aggregate Losses," Computing in Economics and Finance 2003 246, Society for Computational Economics.
    35. Giesecke, Kay & Weber, Stefan, 2004. "Cyclical correlations, credit contagion, and portfolio losses," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 28(12), pages 3009-3036, December.
    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. M. Hashem Pesaran & Til Schuermann & Bjorn-Jakob Treutler, 2007. "Global Business Cycles and Credit Risk," NBER Chapters, in: The Risks of Financial Institutions, pages 419-474, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Gregory Connor & Lisa R. Goldberg & Robert A. Korajczyk, 2010. "Portfolio Risk Analysis," Economics Books, Princeton University Press, edition 1, number 9224, April.
    3. Giesecke, Kay & Longstaff, Francis A. & Schaefer, Stephen & Strebulaev, Ilya, 2011. "Corporate bond default risk: A 150-year perspective," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 102(2), pages 233-250.
    4. repec:wyi:journl:002109 is not listed on IDEAS
    5. Duffie, Darrell & Saita, Leandro & Wang, Ke, 2007. "Multi-period corporate default prediction with stochastic covariates," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 83(3), pages 635-665, March.
    6. Han-Hsing Lee, 2020. "Distress risk, product market competition, and corporate bond yield spreads," Review of Quantitative Finance and Accounting, Springer, vol. 55(3), pages 1093-1135, October.
    7. Reisz, Alexander S. & Perlich, Claudia, 2007. "A market-based framework for bankruptcy prediction," Journal of Financial Stability, Elsevier, vol. 3(2), pages 85-131, July.
    8. Albrecht, Peter, 2005. "Kreditrisiken - Modellierung und Management: Ein Überblick," German Risk and Insurance Review (GRIR), University of Cologne, Department of Risk Management and Insurance, vol. 1(2), pages 22-152.
    9. Pesaran, M. Hashem & Schuermann, Til & Treutler, Bjorn-Jakob & Weiner, Scott M., 2006. "Macroeconomic Dynamics and Credit Risk: A Global Perspective," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 38(5), pages 1211-1261, August.
    10. Augustin, Patrick & Subrahmanyam, Marti G. & Tang, Dragon Yongjun & Wang, Sarah Qian, 2014. "Credit Default Swaps: A Survey," Foundations and Trends(R) in Finance, now publishers, vol. 9(1-2), pages 1-196, December.
    11. Hamerle, Alfred & Liebig, Thilo & Rösch, Daniel, 2003. "Credit Risk Factor Modeling and the Basel II IRB Approach," Discussion Paper Series 2: Banking and Financial Studies 2003,02, Deutsche Bundesbank.
    12. Tor Jacobson & Jesper Lindé & Kasper Roszbach, 2013. "Firm Default And Aggregate Fluctuations," Journal of the European Economic Association, European Economic Association, vol. 11(4), pages 945-972, August.
    13. Duffie, Darrell, 2005. "Credit risk modeling with affine processes," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 29(11), pages 2751-2802, November.
    14. Nystrom, Kaj & Skoglund, Jimmy, 2006. "A credit risk model for large dimensional portfolios with application to economic capital," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 30(8), pages 2163-2197, August.
    15. Ulrich Erlenmaier & Hans Gersbach, 2014. "Default Correlations in the Merton Model," Review of Finance, European Finance Association, vol. 18(5), pages 1775-1809.
    16. Kay Giesecke & Francis A. Longstaff & Stephen Schaefer & Ilya Strebulaev, 2010. "Corporate Bond Default Risk: A 150-Year Perspective," NBER Working Papers 15848, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    17. Mark S. Carey & Michael B. Gordy, 2016. "The Bank as Grim Reaper : Debt Composition and Bankruptcy Thresholds," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 2016-069, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
    18. Sanjiv R. Das & Darrell Duffie & Nikunj Kapadia & Leandro Saita, 2007. "Common Failings: How Corporate Defaults Are Correlated," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 62(1), pages 93-117, February.
    19. Anginer, Deniz & Yildizhan, Celim, 2009. "Is there a Distress Risk Anomaly? Pricing of Systematic Default Risk in the Cross Section of Equity Returns," MPRA Paper 53885, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised 23 Apr 2013.
    20. Ester Chen & Ilanit Gavious & Nadav Steinberg, 2019. "Dividends from unrealized earnings and default risk," Review of Accounting Studies, Springer, vol. 24(2), pages 491-535, June.
    21. Pierre Collin-Dufresne & Robert S. Goldstein & Jean Helwege, 2010. "Is Credit Event Risk Priced? Modeling Contagion via the Updating of Beliefs," NBER Working Papers 15733, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.

    More about this item

    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:eee:empfin:v:15:y:2008:i:4:p:583-612. 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.elsevier.com/locate/jempfin .

    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: Nithya Sathishkumar (email available below). General contact details of provider: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/jempfin .

    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.