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Monetary Policy, Leverage, and Bank Risk-taking

  • DellAriccia, Giovanni
  • Laeven, Luc
  • Marquez, Robert

The recent global financial crisis has ignited a debate on whether easy monetary conditions can lead to greater bank risk-taking. We study this issue in a model of leveraged financial intermediaries that endogenously choose the riskiness of their portfolios. When banks can adjust their capital structures, monetary easing unequivocally leads to greater leverage and higher risk. However, if the capital structure is fixed, the effect depends on the degree of leverage: following a policy rate cut, well capitalized banks increase risk, while highly levered banks decrease it. Further, the capitalization cutoff depends on the degree of bank competition. It is therefore expected to vary across countries and over time.

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Paper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 8199.

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Date of creation: Jan 2011
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Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:8199
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  1. Giovanni Dell'Ariccia & Robert Marquez, 2010. "Risk and the Corporate Structure of Banks," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 65(3), pages 1075-1096, 06.
  2. Yener Altunbas & Leonardo Gambacorta & David Marques-Ibanez, 2010. "Does monetary policy affect bank risk-taking?," BIS Working Papers 298, Bank for International Settlements.
  3. Jiminez, G. & Ongena, S. & Saurina, J., 2007. "Hazardous Times for Monetary Policy : What do Twenty-three Million Bank Loans Say about the Effects of Monetary Policy on Credit Risk?," Discussion Paper 2007-75, Tilburg University, Center for Economic Research.
  4. Mark T. Leary & Michael R. Roberts, 2005. "Do Firms Rebalance Their Capital Structures?," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 60(6), pages 2575-2619, December.
  5. Freixas, X. & Martin, A. & Skeie, D., 2010. "Bank Liquidity, Interbank Markets, and Monetary Policy," Discussion Paper 2010-35S, Tilburg University, Center for Economic Research.
  6. Maddaloni, Angela & Peydró, José-Luis, 2010. "Bank risk-taking, securitization, supervision and low interest rates: Evidence from the euro area and the U.S. lending standards," Working Paper Series 1248, European Central Bank.
  7. Mitchell Berlin & Loretta J. Mester, 1998. "Deposits and relationship lending," Working Papers 98-22, Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia.
  8. Douglas W. Diamond & Raghuram G. Rajan, . "Liquidity Risk, Liquidity Creation and Financial Fragility: A Theory of Banking," CRSP working papers 476, Center for Research in Security Prices, Graduate School of Business, University of Chicago.
  9. Eduardo Levy Yeyati & Tito Cordella, 1999. "Bank Bailouts; Moral Hazard vs. Value Effect," IMF Working Papers 99/106, International Monetary Fund.
  10. Douglas W. Diamond & Raghuram G. Rajan, 2009. "Illiquidity and Interest Rate Policy," NBER Working Papers 15197, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. Bernhard Eckwert & Burkhard Drees & Felix Vardy, 2011. "Cheap Money and Risk Taking: Opacity versus Underlying Risk," EcoMod2011 2782, EcoMod.
  12. Dell'Ariccia, Giovanni & Marquez, Robert, 2006. "Competition among regulators and credit market integration," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 79(2), pages 401-430, February.
  13. Vasso Ioannidou & Steven Ongena & José-Luis Peydró, 2015. "Monetary Policy, Risk-Taking, and Pricing: Evidence from a Quasi-Natural Experiment," Review of Finance, European Finance Association, vol. 19(1), pages 95-144.
  14. Gabriella Chiesa, . "Incentive-based Lending Capacity, Competition and Regulation in Banking," Working Papers 92, IGIER (Innocenzo Gasparini Institute for Economic Research), Bocconi University.
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