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Banks without parachutes: Competitive effects of government bail-out policies

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  • Hakenes, Hendrik
  • Schnabel, Isabel

Abstract

We analyze the competitive effects of government bail-out policies in two models with different degrees of transparency in the banking sector. Our main result is that bail-outs lead to higher risk-taking among the protected bank's competitors, independently of transparency. The reason is that the prospect of a bail-out induces the protected bank to expand, which intensifies competition in the deposit market, depresses other banks' margins, and thereby increases risk-taking incentives. Contrary to conventional wisdom, protected banks may take lower risks when transparency in the banking sector is low and the deposit supply is sufficiently elastic.

Suggested Citation

  • Hakenes, Hendrik & Schnabel, Isabel, 2010. "Banks without parachutes: Competitive effects of government bail-out policies," Journal of Financial Stability, Elsevier, vol. 6(3), pages 156-168, September.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:finsta:v:6:y:2010:i:3:p:156-168
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    Keywords

    Government bail-out Banking competition Transparency Too big to fail Financial stability;

    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
    • L11 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Production, Pricing, and Market Structure; Size Distribution of Firms

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