IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/bca/bocadp/09-15.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Regulatory Constraints on Bank Leverage: Issues and Lessons from the Canadian Experience

Author

Listed:
  • Etienne Bordeleau
  • Allan Crawford
  • Christopher Graham

Abstract

The Basel capital framework plays an important role in risk management by linking a bank's minimum capital requirements to the riskiness of its assets. Nevertheless, the risk estimates underlying these calculations may be imperfect, and it appears that a cyclical bias in measures of risk-adjusted capital contributed to procyclical increases in global leverage prior to the recent financial crisis. As such, international policy discussions are considering an unweighted leverage ratio as a supplement to existing risk-weighted capital requirements. Canadian banks offer a useful case study in this respect, having been subject to a regulatory ceiling on an unweighted leverage ratio since the early 1980s. The authors review lessons from the Canadian experience with leverage constraints, and provide some empirical analysis on how such constraints affect banks' leverage management. In contrast to a number of countries without regulatory constraints, leverage at major Canadian banks was relatively stable leading up to the crisis, reducing pressure for deleveraging during the economic downturn. Empirical results suggest that major Canadian banks follow different strategies for managing their leverage. Some banks tend to raise their precautionary buffer quickly, through sharp reductions in asset growth and faster capital growth, when a shock pushes leverage too close to its authorized limit. For other banks, shocks have more persistent effects on leverage, possibly because these banks tend to have higher buffers on average. Overall, the authors' results suggest that a leverage ceiling would be a useful tool to complement risk-weighted measures and mitigate procyclical tendencies in the financial system.

Suggested Citation

  • Etienne Bordeleau & Allan Crawford & Christopher Graham, 2009. "Regulatory Constraints on Bank Leverage: Issues and Lessons from the Canadian Experience," Discussion Papers 09-15, Bank of Canada.
  • Handle: RePEc:bca:bocadp:09-15
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.bankofcanada.ca/en/res/dp/2009/dp09-15.pdf
    Download Restriction: no

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Blum, Jürg M., 2008. "Why 'Basel II' may need a leverage ratio restriction," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 32(8), pages 1699-1707, August.
    2. Hansen, Bruce E, 1996. "Inference When a Nuisance Parameter Is Not Identified under the Null Hypothesis," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 64(2), pages 413-430, March.
    3. Elijah Brewer III & George Kaufman & Larry Wall, 2008. "Bank Capital Ratios Across Countries: Why Do They Vary?," Journal of Financial Services Research, Springer;Western Finance Association, vol. 34(2), pages 177-201, December.
    4. Wall, Larry D. & Peterson, David R., 1987. "The effect of capital adequacy guidelines on large bank holding companies," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 11(4), pages 581-600, December.
    5. Jacob A. Bikker & Paul A. J. Metzemakers, 2007. "Is Bank Capital Procyclical? A Cross-Country Analysis," Credit and Capital Markets, Credit and Capital Markets, vol. 40(2), pages 225-264.
    6. Jokipii, Terhi & Milne, Alistair, 2008. "The cyclical behaviour of European bank capital buffers," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 32(8), pages 1440-1451, August.
    7. Rime, Bertrand, 2001. "Capital requirements and bank behaviour: Empirical evidence for Switzerland," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 25(4), pages 789-805, April.
    8. Andrews, Donald W K, 1993. "Tests for Parameter Instability and Structural Change with Unknown Change Point," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 61(4), pages 821-856, July.
    9. Xiujian Chen & Shu Lin & W. Robert Reed, 2005. "Another Look At What To Do With Time-Series Cross-Section Data," Econometrics 0506004, EconWPA.
    10. Ayuso, Juan & Perez, Daniel & Saurina, Jesus, 2004. "Are capital buffers pro-cyclical?: Evidence from Spanish panel data," Journal of Financial Intermediation, Elsevier, vol. 13(2), pages 249-264, April.
    11. Mark Illing & Graydon Paulin, 2004. "The New Basel Capital Accord and the Cyclical Behaviour of Bank Capital," Staff Working Papers 04-30, Bank of Canada.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. Leonardo Gambacorta & Sudipto Karmakar, 2016. "Leverage and risk weighted capital requirements," BIS Working Papers 586, Bank for International Settlements.
    2. Bouvatier, Vincent & López-Villavicencio, Antonia & Mignon, Valérie, 2014. "Short-run dynamics in bank credit: Assessing nonlinearities in cyclicality," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 37(C), pages 127-136.
    3. Damar, H. Evren & Meh, Césaire A. & Terajima, Yaz, 2013. "Leverage, balance-sheet size and wholesale funding," Journal of Financial Intermediation, Elsevier, vol. 22(4), pages 639-662.
    4. Guidara, Alaa & Lai, Van Son & Soumaré, Issouf & Tchana, Fulbert Tchana, 2013. "Banks’ capital buffer, risk and performance in the Canadian banking system: Impact of business cycles and regulatory changes," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 37(9), pages 3373-3387.
    5. Nikolaos Papanikolaou & Christian Wolff, 2010. "Leverage and risk in US commercial banking in the light of the current financial crisis," LSF Research Working Paper Series 10-12, Luxembourg School of Finance, University of Luxembourg.
    6. Papanikolaou, Nikolaos I. & Wolff, Christian C.P., 2014. "The role of on- and off-balance-sheet leverage of banks in the late 2000s crisis," Journal of Financial Stability, Elsevier, vol. 14(C), pages 3-22.
    7. Ingo Fender & Ulf Lewrick, 2016. "Adding it all up: the macroeconomic impact of Basel II and outstanding reform issues," BIS Working Papers 591, Bank for International Settlements.
    8. repec:eee:advacc:v:36:y:2017:i:c:p:58-74 is not listed on IDEAS
    9. Koichiro Kamada & Kentaro Nasu, 2010. "How Can Leverage Regulations Work for the Stabilization of Financial Systems?," Bank of Japan Working Paper Series 10-E-2, Bank of Japan.
    10. Michael Brei & Leonardo Gambacorta, 2014. "The leverage ratio over the cycle," BIS Working Papers 471, Bank for International Settlements.
    11. Clovis Rugemintwari & Alain Sauviat & Amine Tarazi, 2012. "Bâle 3 et la réhabilitation du ratio de levier des banques. Pourquoi et comment ?," Revue économique, Presses de Sciences-Po, vol. 63(4), pages 809-820.
    12. repec:mbr:jmonec:v:7:y:2012:i:1:p:139-160 is not listed on IDEAS

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Financial institutions; Financial stability; Financial system regulation and policies;

    JEL classification:

    • G01 - Financial Economics - - General - - - Financial Crises
    • G28 - Financial Economics - - Financial Institutions and Services - - - Government Policy and Regulation
    • G21 - Financial Economics - - Financial Institutions and Services - - - Banks; Other Depository Institutions; Micro Finance Institutions; Mortgages

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:bca:bocadp:09-15. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (). General contact details of provider: http://www.bank-banque-canada.ca/ .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.