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Uncertainty as commitment

Author

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  • Nosal, Jaromir B.
  • Ordoñez, Guillermo

Abstract

When governments cannot commit to not providing bailouts, banks may take excessive risks and generate crises. At the outbreak of a financial crisis, however, governments are usually uncertain about its systemic nature, and may delay intervention to learn more from endogenous market outcomes. We show such delay introduces strategic restraint: banks restrict their portfolio riskiness relative to their peers to avoid being the worst performers and bearing the costs of delay. Hence, uncertainty has the potential to self-discipline banks and mitigate crises in the absence of commitment. We study the effects of standard regulations on these novel forces.

Suggested Citation

  • Nosal, Jaromir B. & Ordoñez, Guillermo, 2016. "Uncertainty as commitment," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 80(C), pages 124-140.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:moneco:v:80:y:2016:i:c:p:124-140
    DOI: 10.1016/j.jmoneco.2016.06.001
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Acharya, Viral V. & Yorulmazer, Tanju, 2007. "Too many to fail--An analysis of time-inconsistency in bank closure policies," Journal of Financial Intermediation, Elsevier, vol. 16(1), pages 1-31, January.
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    4. Javier Bianchi, 2016. "Efficient Bailouts?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 106(12), pages 3607-3659, December.
    5. Perotti, Enrico C. & Suarez, Javier, 2002. "Last bank standing: What do I gain if you fail?," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 46(9), pages 1599-1622, October.
    6. Ing-Haw Cheng & Konstantin Milbradt, 2012. "The Hazards of Debt: Rollover Freezes, Incentives, and Bailouts," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 25(4), pages 1070-1110.
    7. Juan D. Carrillo & Thomas Mariotti, 2000. "Strategic Ignorance as a Self-Disciplining Device," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 67(3), pages 529-544.
    8. Todd Keister, 2016. "Bailouts and Financial Fragility," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 83(2), pages 704-736.
    9. Xavier Freixas, 1999. "Optimal Bail Out Policy, Conditionality and Creative Ambiguity," FMG Discussion Papers dp327, Financial Markets Group.
    10. Cukierman, Alex & Izhakian, Yehuda, 2015. "Bailout uncertainty in a microfounded general equilibrium model of the financial system," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 52(C), pages 160-179.
    11. Bryan Kelly & Hanno Lustig & Stijn Van Nieuwerburgh, 2016. "Too-Systemic-to-Fail: What Option Markets Imply about Sector-Wide Government Guarantees," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 106(6), pages 1278-1319, June.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Javier Bianchi, 2016. "Efficient Bailouts?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 106(12), pages 3607-3659, December.
    2. Allen, Franklin & Carletti, Elena & Goldstein, Itay & Leonello, Agnese, 2015. "Government Guarantees and Financial Stability," CEPR Discussion Papers 10560, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    3. Facundo Piguillem & Alessandro Riboni, 2015. "Spending-Biased Legislators: Discipline Through Disagreement," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 130(2), pages 901-949.
    4. Todd Keister, 2016. "Bailouts and Financial Fragility," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 83(2), pages 704-736.
    5. repec:eee:moneco:v:89:y:2017:i:c:p:51-67 is not listed on IDEAS
    6. Ernesto Pastén, 2014. "Bailouts and Prudential Policies - A Delicate Interaction," Working Papers Central Bank of Chile 743, Central Bank of Chile.
    7. Guillermo Ordonez & Selman Erol, 2017. "Network Reactions to Banking Regulations," 2017 Meeting Papers 1125, Society for Economic Dynamics.
    8. Farhi, Emmanuel & Tirole, Jean, 2015. "Deadly Embrace: Sovereign and Financial Balance Sheets Doom Loops," CEPR Discussion Papers 11024, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    9. Bengui, Julien & Bianchi, Javier & Coulibaly, Louphou, 2016. "Financial Safety Nets," Staff Report 535, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
    10. Mark Gradstein & Michael Kaganovich, 2018. "Legislative Restraint in Corporate Bailout Design," CESifo Working Paper Series 7076, CESifo Group Munich.
    11. De Caux, Robert & McGroarty, Frank & Brede, Markus, 2017. "The evolution of risk and bailout strategy in banking systems," Physica A: Statistical Mechanics and its Applications, Elsevier, vol. 468(C), pages 109-118.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Imperfect information; Commitment; Bailouts; Moral hazard; Time consistency;

    JEL classification:

    • D53 - Microeconomics - - General Equilibrium and Disequilibrium - - - Financial Markets
    • D8 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty
    • D81 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Criteria for Decision-Making under Risk and Uncertainty
    • D83 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Search; Learning; Information and Knowledge; Communication; Belief; Unawareness
    • E44 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Money and Interest Rates - - - Financial Markets and the Macroeconomy
    • E58 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit - - - Central Banks and Their Policies
    • G21 - Financial Economics - - Financial Institutions and Services - - - Banks; Other Depository Institutions; Micro Finance Institutions; Mortgages
    • G33 - Financial Economics - - Corporate Finance and Governance - - - Bankruptcy; Liquidation
    • G34 - Financial Economics - - Corporate Finance and Governance - - - Mergers; Acquisitions; Restructuring; Corporate Governance

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