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International Banking and the Allocation of Risk

Macroeconomic risks could magnify individual bank risk. Mitigating the influence of economy-wide risks on banks could therefore be very important to maintain a smooth-running banking system. In this paper, we explore the extent to which macroeconomic risks affect banks. We use a bank-level dataset on over 2,000 banks worldwide for the years 1995-2002 to study the effect of macroeconomic volatility, the openness of the banking system, and banking regulations on bank risks. Our measure of bank risk is the volatility of banks’ pretax profits. We find that macroeconomic volatility increases banks’ profit volatility and that international openness of the banking system lowers bank risk. We find no impact of banking regulation on profit volatility. Our findings suggest that if policymakers want to lower bank risk, they should seek to lower macroeconomic volatility as well as increase openness in the banking system.

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File URL: http://www.iaw.edu/RePEc/iaw/pdf/iaw_dp_32.pdf
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Paper provided by Institut für Angewandte Wirtschaftsforschung (IAW) in its series IAW Discussion Papers with number 32.

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Length: 35 pages
Date of creation: May 2007
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:iaw:iawdip:32
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  1. James H. Stock & Mark W. Watson, 2002. "Has the Business Cycle Changed and Why?," NBER Working Papers 9127, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Pierre-Guillaume Méon & Laurent Weill, 2003. "Can Mergers in Europe Help Banks Hedge Against Macroeconomic Risk," Working Papers of LaRGE Research Center 2003-05, Laboratoire de Recherche en Gestion et Economie (LaRGE), Université de Strasbourg.
  3. Axel Dreher, 2005. "Does Globalization Affect Growth? Evidence from a new Index of Globalization," TWI Research Paper Series 6, Thurgauer Wirtschaftsinstitut, Universität Konstanz.
  4. Rebecca S. Demsetz & Marc R. Saidenberg & Philip E. Strahan, 1996. "Banks with something to lose: the disciplinary role of franchise value," Economic Policy Review, Federal Reserve Bank of New York, issue Oct, pages 1-14.
  5. Diego A. Comin & Thomas Philippon, 2006. "The Rise in Firm-Level Volatility: Causes and Consequences," NBER Chapters, in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 2005, Volume 20, pages 167-228 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Claudia M. Buch & Gayle L. DeLong, 2001. "Cross-Border Bank Mergers: What Lures the Rare Animal?," Kiel Working Papers 1070, Kiel Institute for the World Economy.
  7. Keeley, Michael C, 1990. "Deposit Insurance, Risk, and Market Power in Banking," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 80(5), pages 1183-1200, December.
  8. Reint Gropp & Jukka Vesala, 2002. "Deposit insurance, moral hazard, and market monitoring," Proceedings 823, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago.
  9. Bekaert, Geert & Harvey, Campbell R. & Lundblad, Christian, 2006. "Growth volatility and financial liberalization," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 25(3), pages 370-403, April.
  10. Diamond, Douglas W, 1984. "Financial Intermediation and Delegated Monitoring," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 51(3), pages 393-414, July.
  11. Amihud, Yakov & DeLong, Gayle L. & Saunders, Anthony, 2002. "The effects of cross-border bank mergers on bank risk and value," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 21(6), pages 857-877, November.
  12. Ari Hyytinen, 2002. "The time profile of risk in banking crises: evidence from Scandinavian banking sectors," Applied Financial Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 12(9), pages 613-623.
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