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An economic analysis of liquidity-saving mechanisms

  • Antoine Martin
  • James McAndrews

A recent innovation in large-value payments systems has been the design and implementation of liquidity-saving mechanisms (LSMs), tools used in conjunction with real-time gross settlement (RTGS) systems. LSMs give system participants, such as banks, an option not offered by RTGS alone: they can queue their outgoing payments. Queued payments are released if some prespecified event occurs. LSMs can reduce the amount of central bank balances necessary to operate a payments system as well as quicken settlement. This article analyzes the performance of RTGS systems with and without the addition of an LSM. The authors find that, in terms of settling payments early, these mechanisms typically outperform pure RTGS systems. However, there are times when RTGS systems can be preferable to LSMs, such as when many banks that send payments early in RTGS choose to queue their payments when an LSM is available. The authors also show that the design of a liquidity-saving mechanism has important implications for the welfare of system participants, even in the absence of payment netting. In particular, the parameters specified determine whether the addition of an LSM increases or decreases welfare.

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Article provided by Federal Reserve Bank of New York in its journal Economic Policy Review.

Volume (Year): (2008)
Issue (Month): Sep ()
Pages: 25-39

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Handle: RePEc:fip:fednep:y:2008:i:sep:p:25-39:n:v.14no.2
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  1. Antoine Martin & James McAndrews, 2007. "Liquidity-saving mechanisms," Staff Reports 282, Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
  2. Mills Jr., David C. & Nesmith, Travis D., 2008. "Risk and concentration in payment and securities settlement systems," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 55(3), pages 542-553, April.
  3. Bech, Morten L. & Garratt, Rod, 2001. "The Intraday Liquidity Management Game," University of California at Santa Barbara, Economics Working Paper Series qt0m6035wg, Department of Economics, UC Santa Barbara.
  4. Kurt Johnson & James J. McAndrews & Kimmo Soramaki, 2004. "Economizing on liquidity with deferred settlement mechanisms," Economic Policy Review, Federal Reserve Bank of New York, issue Dec, pages 51-72.
  5. Angelini, Paolo, 1998. "An analysis of competitive externalities in gross settlement systems," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 22(1), pages 1-18, January.
  6. Angelini, Paolo, 2000. "Are Banks Risk Averse? Intraday Timing of Operations in the Interbank Market," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 32(1), pages 54-73, February.
  7. Olivier Armantier & Jeffrey Arnold & James McAndrews, 2008. "Changes in the timing distribution of Fedwire funds transfers," Economic Policy Review, Federal Reserve Bank of New York, issue Sep, pages 83-112.
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