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Balance Sheet Interlinkages and Macro-Financial Risk Analysis in the Euro Area

  • Kavonius, Ilja Kristian
  • Castrén, Olli

The financial crisis has highlighted the need for models that can identify counterparty risk exposures and shock transmission processes at the systemic level. We use the euro area financial accounts (flow of funds) data to construct a sector-level network of bilateral balance sheet exposures and show how local shocks can propagate throughout the network and affect the balance sheets in other, even seemingly remote, parts of the financial system. We then use the contingent claims approach to extend this accounting-based network of interlinked exposures to risk-based balance sheets which are sensitive to changes in leverage and asset volatility. We conclude that the bilateral cross-sector exposures in the euro area financial system constitute important channels through which local risk exposures and balance sheet dislocations can be transmitted, with the financial intermediaries playing a key role in the processes. High financial leverage and high asset volatility are found to increase a sector’s vulnerability to shocks and contagion. JEL Classification: C22, E01, E21, E44, F36, G01, G12, G14

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Paper provided by European Central Bank in its series Working Paper Series with number 1124.

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Date of creation: Dec 2009
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Handle: RePEc:ecb:ecbwps:20091124
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  1. Upper, Christian & Worms, Andreas, 2002. "Estimating Bilateral Exposures in the German Interbank Market: Is there a Danger of Contagion?," Discussion Paper Series 1: Economic Studies 2002,09, Deutsche Bundesbank, Research Centre.
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