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Asset Encumbrance, Bank Funding and Financial Fragility

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  • Toni Ahnert
  • Kartik Anand
  • Prasanna Gai
  • James Chapman

Abstract

How does asset encumbrance affect the fragility of intermediaries subject to rollover risk? We offer a model in which a bank issues covered bonds backed by a pool of assets that is bankruptcy remote and replenished following losses. Encumbering assets allows a bank to raise cheap secured debt and expand profitable investment, but it also concentrates risk on unsecured debt and thus exacerbates fragility and raises unsecured funding costs. Deposit insurance or wholesale funding guarantees induce excessive encumbrance and fragility. To mitigate such risk shifting, we study prudential regulatory tools, including limits on encumbrance, minimum capital requirements and surcharges for encumbrance.

Suggested Citation

  • Toni Ahnert & Kartik Anand & Prasanna Gai & James Chapman, 2016. "Asset Encumbrance, Bank Funding and Financial Fragility," Staff Working Papers 16-16, Bank of Canada.
  • Handle: RePEc:bca:bocawp:16-16
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    Cited by:

    1. Matta, Rafael & Perotti, Enrico C, 2015. "Insecure Debt," CEPR Discussion Papers 10505, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    2. Banal-Estanol, Albert & Benito, Enrique & Khametshin, Dmitry, 2017. "Asset encumbrance and bank risk: First evidence from public disclosures in Europe," CEPR Discussion Papers 12168, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    3. Robert McKeown, 2017. "An Overview of the Canadian Banking System: 1996 to 2015," Working Papers 1379, Queen's University, Department of Economics.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Financial Institutions; Financial stability; Financial system regulation and policies;

    JEL classification:

    • D82 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Asymmetric and Private Information; Mechanism Design
    • 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

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