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Interest Margins and Banks’ Asset-Liability Composition

  • Idrees Khawaja

    ()

    (Pakistan Institute of Development Economics (P.I.D.E), Islamabad, Pakistan.)

This article examines the determinants of banks’ interest margins. The results suggest that short-term government bonds (floating debt) and the large share of interest-insensitive deposits held by banks are the key determinants of the interest margin. This is in contrast to the popular perception that the market power of the oligopolistic industry contributes to banks’ high interest margins. While a behavioral change—a greater inclination to save and an increase in output—might reduce the share of interest-insensitive deposits, the reduction in government debt depends on the state of certain macro-variables and macroeconomic management. Given these determinants and the possible ways of containing margins, the containment process is a tall order. The study also implicitly confirms that government borrowing is crowding out private investment.

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Article provided by Department of Economics, The Lahore School of Economics in its journal Lahore Journal of Economics.

Volume (Year): 16 (2011)
Issue (Month): Special Edition (September)
Pages: 255-270

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Handle: RePEc:lje:journl:v:16:y:2011:i:sp:p:255-270
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  1. Martinez Peria, Maria Soledad & Mody, Ashoka, 2004. "How foreign participation and market concentration impact bank spreads : evidence from Latin America," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3210, The World Bank.
  2. Paola Sapienza, 2002. "The Effects of Banking Mergers on Loan Contracts," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 57(1), pages 329-367, 02.
  3. Allen N. Berger & Timothy H. Hannan, 1987. "The price-concentration relationship in banking," Research Papers in Banking and Financial Economics 100, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  4. Timothy H. Hannan & J. Nellie Liang, 1993. "Bank commercial lending and the influence of thrift competition," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 93-39, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  5. Neumark, David & Sharpe, Steven A, 1992. "Market Structure and the Nature of Price Rigidity: Evidence from the Market for Consumer Deposits," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 107(2), pages 657-80, May.
  6. Franklin R. Edwards, 1965. "Concentration And Competition In Commercial Banking: A Statistical Study," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 20(1), pages 101-102, 03.
  7. Corvoisier, Sandrine & Gropp, Reint, 2002. "Bank concentration and retail interest rates," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 26(11), pages 2155-2189, November.
  8. Ho, Thomas S. Y. & Saunders, Anthony, 1981. "The Determinants of Bank Interest Margins: Theory and Empirical Evidence," Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis, Cambridge University Press, vol. 16(04), pages 581-600, November.
  9. Frederic S. Mishkin, 1995. "Symposium on the Monetary Transmission Mechanism," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 9(4), pages 3-10, Fall.
  10. Laura Valderrama & Wendell A. Samuel, 2006. "The Monetary Policy Regime and Banking Spreads in Barbados," IMF Working Papers 06/211, International Monetary Fund.
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