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Life below zero: bank lending under negative policy rates

Author

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  • Heider, Florian
  • Saidi, Farzad
  • Schepens, Glenn

Abstract

We show that negative policy rates affect the supply of bank credit in a novel way. Banks are reluctant to pass on negative rates to depositors, which increases the funding cost of high-deposit banks, and reduces their net worth, relative to low-deposit banks. As a consequence, the introduction of negative policy rates by the European Central Bank in mid-2014 leads to more risk taking and less lending by euro-area banks with greater reliance on deposit funding. Our results suggest that negative rates are less accommodative, and could pose a risk to financial stability, if lending is done by high-deposit banks. JEL Classification: E44, E52, E58, G20, G21

Suggested Citation

  • Heider, Florian & Saidi, Farzad & Schepens, Glenn, 2018. "Life below zero: bank lending under negative policy rates," Working Paper Series 2173, European Central Bank.
  • Handle: RePEc:ecb:ecbwps:20182173
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    File URL: https://www.ecb.europa.eu//pub/pdf/scpwps/ecb.wp2173.en.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. S. Demiralp & J. Eisenschmidt & T. Vlassopoulos, 2017. "Negative interest rates, excess liquidity and bank business models: Banks’ reaction to unconventional monetary policy in the euro area," Koç University-TUSIAD Economic Research Forum Working Papers 1708, Koc University-TUSIAD Economic Research Forum.
    2. Tobias Berg & Anthony Saunders & Sascha Steffen, 2016. "The Total Cost of Corporate Borrowing in the Loan Market: Don't Ignore the Fees," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 71(3), pages 1357-1392, June.
    3. Christoph Basten & Mike Mariathasan, 2018. "How Banks Respond to Negative Interest Rates: Evidence from the Swiss Exemption Threshold," CESifo Working Paper Series 6901, CESifo Group Munich.
    4. Hannan, Timothy H & Berger, Allen N, 1991. "The Rigidity of Prices: Evidence from the Banking Industry," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 81(4), pages 938-945, September.
    5. Ivashina, Victoria, 2009. "Asymmetric information effects on loan spreads," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 92(2), pages 300-319, May.
    6. Marco Di Maggio & Amir Kermani & Christopher Palmer, 2016. "How Quantitative Easing Works: Evidence on the Refinancing Channel," NBER Working Papers 22638, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    7. Gauti B. Eggertsson & Ragnar E. Juelsrud & Ella Getz Wold, 2017. "Are Negative Nominal Interest Rates Expansionary?," NBER Working Papers 24039, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Blog mentions

    As found by EconAcademics.org, the blog aggregator for Economics research:
    1. Negative Nominal Interest Rates and Banking
      by Steve Cecchetti and Kim Schoenholtz in Money, Banking and Financial Markets on 2018-10-22 12:23:45

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    Cited by:

    1. Ampudia, Miguel & Heuvel, Skander Van den, 2018. "Monetary policy and bank equity values in a time of low interest rates," Working Paper Series 2199, European Central Bank.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    bank balance-sheet channel; bank risk-taking channel; deposits; negative interest rates; zero lower bound;

    JEL classification:

    • E44 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Money and Interest Rates - - - Financial Markets and the Macroeconomy
    • E52 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit - - - Monetary Policy
    • E58 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit - - - Central Banks and Their Policies
    • G20 - Financial Economics - - Financial Institutions and Services - - - General
    • G21 - Financial Economics - - Financial Institutions and Services - - - Banks; Other Depository Institutions; Micro Finance Institutions; Mortgages

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