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Bank resilience to systemic shocks and the stability of banking systems: Small is beautiful

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  • Vallascas, Francesco
  • Keasey, Kevin

Abstract

Utilising a novel empirical approach and an extensive sample of listed European banks, we identify which bank characteristics offer a shelter from systemic shocks and compare the relative effects of several hypothetical prudential rules on a bank’s risk exposure. While the results show that restrictions on a bank’s leverage ratio and the imposition of liquidity requirements, as in the Basel III Accord, may improve the resilience of a bank to systemic events, they also demonstrate that bank size, the share of non-interest income and asset growth (none of which are at the centre of the new regulatory landscape) are key determinants of a bank’s risk exposure. In particular, the introduction of a cap on bank absolute size appears the most effective tool, ceteris paribus, to reduce the default risk of a bank given systemic events. Furthermore, in spite of the integration process of the financial industry in Europe, the analysis presented here shows that such a cap should be country-specific with smaller economies requiring smaller banks. Finally, we show that the strengthening of individual bank stability obtained via size restrictions is accompanied by a reduction of the contribution to systemic risk for banks which are relatively large compared to the domestic economy.

Suggested Citation

  • Vallascas, Francesco & Keasey, Kevin, 2012. "Bank resilience to systemic shocks and the stability of banking systems: Small is beautiful," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 31(6), pages 1745-1776.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:jimfin:v:31:y:2012:i:6:p:1745-1776
    DOI: 10.1016/j.jimonfin.2012.03.011
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Banking risk; Microprudential regulation; Macroprudential regulation; European banking;

    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

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