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Measuring Systemic Risk

Author

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  • Viral V. Acharya
  • Lasse H. Pedersen
  • Thomas Philippon
  • Matthew Richardson

Abstract

We present an economic model of systemic risk in which undercapitalization of the financial sector as a whole is assumed to harm the real economy, leading to a systemic risk externality. Each financial institution’s contribution to systemic risk can be measured as its systemic expected shortfall (SES), that is, its propensity to be undercapitalized when the system as a whole is undercapitalized. SES increases in the institution’s leverage and its marginal expected shortfall (MES), that is, its losses in the tail of the system’s loss distribution. We demonstrate empirically the ability of components of SES to predict emerging systemic risk during the financial crisis of 2007–2009.Received December 1, 2015; editorial decision August 5, 2016 by Editor Andrew Karolyi.

Suggested Citation

  • Viral V. Acharya & Lasse H. Pedersen & Thomas Philippon & Matthew Richardson, 2017. "Measuring Systemic Risk," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 30(1), pages 2-47.
  • Handle: RePEc:oup:rfinst:v:30:y:2017:i:1:p:2-47.
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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • G01 - Financial Economics - - General - - - Financial Crises
    • 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
    • D62 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - Externalities
    • H23 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Externalities; Redistributive Effects; Environmental Taxes and Subsidies

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