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How market power influences bank failures: Evidence from Russia

  • Fungacova, Zuzana



  • Weill, Laurent


There has been a notable debate in the banking literature on the impact of bank competition on financial stability. While the dominant view sees a detrimental impact of competition on the stability of banks, this view has recently been challenged by Boyd and De Nicolo (2005) who see the reverse effect. The aim of this paper is to contribute to this literature by providing the first empirical investigation of the role of bank competition on the occurrence of bank failures. We analyze this issue based on a large sample of Russian banks over the period 2001-2007 and employ the Lerner index as the metric of bank competition. The Russian banking industry is a unique example of an emerging market which has undergone a large number of bank failures during the last decade. Our findings clearly support the view that tighter bank competition is detrimental for financial stability. This result is robust to tests controlling for the measurement of market power, the definition of bank failure, the set of control variables, and the particular linear specification of the relationship. The normative implication of our findings is therefore that measures that increase bank competition could undermine financial stability.

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Paper provided by Bank of Finland, Institute for Economies in Transition in its series BOFIT Discussion Papers with number 12/2009.

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Length: 31 pages
Date of creation: 10 Sep 2009
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:hhs:bofitp:2009_012
Contact details of provider: Postal: Bank of Finland, BOFIT, P.O. Box 160, FI-00101 Helsinki, Finland
Phone: + 358 10 831 2268
Fax: + 358 10 831 2294
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  1. Claeys, Sophie & Schoors, Koen, 2007. "Bank supervision Russian style: Evidence of conflicts between micro- and macroprudential concerns," Working Paper Series 205, Sveriges Riksbank (Central Bank of Sweden).
  2. Berger, Allen N. & Klapper, Leora F. & Turk-Ariss, Rima, 2008. "Bank competition and financial stability," Policy Research Working Paper Series 4696, The World Bank.
  3. Gianni De Nicoló & Elena Loukoianova, 2007. "Bank Ownership, Market Structure and Risk," IMF Working Papers 07/215, International Monetary Fund.
  4. Carbo, Santiago & Humphrey, David & Maudos, Joaquin & Molyneux, Philip, 2006. "Cross-Country Comparisons of Competition and Pricing Power in European Banking," MPRA Paper 15258, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised 2006.
  5. David Martinez-Miera & Rafael Repullo, 2010. "Does Competition Reduce the Risk of Bank Failure?," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 23(10), pages 3638-3664, October.
  6. Juan Fernández de Guevara & Joaquín Maudos & Francisco Pérez, 2005. "Market Power in European Banking Sectors," Journal of Financial Services Research, Springer, vol. 27(2), pages 109-137, April.
  7. Caminal, Ramon & Matutes, Carmen, 2002. "Market power and banking failures," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 20(9), pages 1341-1361, November.
  8. John H. Boyd & Gianni De Nicolã, 2005. "The Theory of Bank Risk Taking and Competition Revisited," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 60(3), pages 1329-1343, 06.
  9. Matutes, Carmen & Vives, Xavier, 2000. "Imperfect competition, risk taking, and regulation in banking," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 44(1), pages 1-34, January.
  10. Martin Cihák & Simon Wolfe & Klaus Schaeck, 2006. "Are More Competitive Banking Systems More Stable?," IMF Working Papers 06/143, International Monetary Fund.
  11. Gabriel Jiménez & Jose A. Lopez & Jesús Saurina, 2007. "How does competition impact bank risk-taking?," Working Paper Series 2007-23, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.
  12. Anatoly Peresetsky & Alexandr Karminsky & Sergei Golovan, 2011. "Probability of default models of Russian banks," Economic Change and Restructuring, Springer, vol. 44(4), pages 297-334, November.
  13. Glushkova, Ekaterina & Vernikov, Andrei, 2009. "How big is the visible hand of the state in the Russian banking industry?," MPRA Paper 15563, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  14. Karas, Alexei & Pyle, William & Schoors, Koen, 2006. "Sophisticated discipline in a nascent deposit market: Evidence from post-communist Russia," BOFIT Discussion Papers 13/2006, Bank of Finland, Institute for Economies in Transition.
  15. David C. Wheelock & Paul W. Wilson, 1995. "Why do banks disappear? The determinants of U.S. bank failures and acquisitions," Working Papers 1995-013, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis.
  16. Männasoo, Kadri & Mayes, David G., 2009. "Explaining bank distress in Eastern European transition economies," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 33(2), pages 244-253, February.
  17. Maudos, Joaquin & Fernandez de Guevara, Juan, 2006. "The cost of market power in banking: social welfare loss vs. inefficiency cost," MPRA Paper 15253, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  18. Beck, Thorsten & Demirguc-Kunt, Asli & Levine, Ross, 2006. "Bank concentration, competition, and crises: First results," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 30(5), pages 1581-1603, May.
  19. Marco Arena, 2005. "Bank Failures and Bank Fundamentals: A Comparative Analysis of Latin America and East Asia during the Nineties using Bank-Level Data," Staff Working Papers 05-19, Bank of Canada.
  20. Solís, Liliana & Maudos, Joaquín, 2008. "The social costs of bank market power: Evidence from Mexico," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 36(3), pages 467-488, September.
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