Rating Banks in Emerging Markets: What Credit Rating Agencies Should Learn from Financial Indicators
The rating agencies' and bank supervisors' records of prompt identification of banking problems in emerging markets has not been satisfactory. This paper suggests that such deficiencies could be explained by the use of financial indicators that, while appropriate for industrial countries, do not work in emerging markets. Among the conclusions, this paper shows that the most commonly used indicator of banking problems in industrial countries, the capital-to-asset ratio, has performed poorly as an indicator of banking problems in Latin America and East Asia. This is because of (a) severe deficiencies in the accounting and regulatory framework and (b) lack of liquid markets for bank shares, subordinated debt and other bank liabilities and assets needed to validate the "real" worth of a bank as opposed to its accounting value. In spite of these problems, an appropriate set of indicators for banking problems in emerging markets can be constructed. But such a system should be based not on the quality of banks loans or on levels of capitalization, but on the general principle that good indicators of banking problems are those that reveal the "true" riskiness of individual banks because they are based on markets that work rather than just relying on accounting figures. Of the alternative indicators proposed in this paper, interest rate paid on deposits and interest rate spreads have proven to be strong performers. In contrast to the interpretation of banks' spreads in industrial countries, low spreads in emerging markets have not always indicated an increased in bank efficiency. Instead, low spreads have often reflected the high-risk taking behavior of weak banks. A difficulty that rating agencies may encounter in considering the suggested approach in this paper is that the methodology implies that the appropriate indicators of banks' performance evolve over time as markets develop and that, given large differences among emerging markets, a single set of indicators will not "fit all". The basic principle that "indicators work where markets work" is the leading guide to the selection of effective indicators. In spite of these considerations, we believe that in facing the trade-off between "uniformity across countries" and "effective indicators", rating agencies would be better off by focusing on the latter.
|Date of creation:||May 2001|
|Date of revision:|
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: 1750 Massachusetts Avenue, NW, Washington, DC 20036-1903|
Web page: http://www.piie.com
More information through EDIRC
References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- James R. Barth & R. Dan Brumbaugh & Daniel Sauerhaft & George Wang, 1985. "Thrift institution failures: causes and policy issues," Proceedings 68, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago.
- Patrick Honohan & Daniela Klingebiel, 2000. "Controlling fiscal costs of banking crises," Proceedings 682, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago.
- Demirguc, Asli & Detragiache, Enrica, 2000.
"Monitoring Banking Sector Fragility: A Multivariate Logit Approach,"
World Bank Economic Review,
World Bank Group, vol. 14(2), pages 287-307, May.
- Enrica Detragiache & Asli DemirgÃ¼Ã§-Kunt, 1999. "Monitoring Banking Sector Fragility: A Multivariate Logit Approach," IMF Working Papers 99/147, International Monetary Fund.
- Reinhart, Carmen & Kaminsky, Graciela, 1999.
"The twin crises: The causes of banking and balance of payments problems,"
14081, University Library of Munich, Germany.
- Carmen M. Reinhart & Graciela L. Kaminsky, 1999. "The Twin Crises: The Causes of Banking and Balance-of-Payments Problems," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 89(3), pages 473-500, June.
- Graciela L. Kaminsky & Carmen M. Reinhart, 1996. "The twin crises: the causes of banking and balance-of-payments problems," International Finance Discussion Papers 544, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
- Reinhart, Carmen & Kaminsky, Graciela, 2000.
"Las crisis gemelas: las causas de los problemas bancarios y de balanza de pagos
[The twin crises: Te causes of banking and balance of payments problems]," MPRA Paper 13842, University Library of Munich, Germany.
- Calomiris, Charles W., 1999. "Building an incentive-compatible safety net," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 23(10), pages 1499-1519, October.
- Robert Billings & Brenda GonzÃ¡lez-Hermosillo & Ceyla Pazarbasioglu, 1996. "Banking System Fragility: Likelihood Versus Timing of Failure: An Application to the Mexican Financial Crisis," IMF Working Papers 96/142, International Monetary Fund.
- Reinhart, Carmen & Goldstein, Morris & Kaminsky, Graciela, 2000. "Assessing financial vulnerability, an early warning system for emerging markets: Introduction," MPRA Paper 13629, University Library of Munich, Germany.
- Patrick Honohan, 1997.
"Banking system failures in developing and transition countries: Diagnosis and predictions,"
BIS Working Papers
39, Bank for International Settlements.
- P. Honohan, 2000. "Banking System Failures in Developing and Transition Countries: Diagnosis and Prediction," Economic Notes, Banca Monte dei Paschi di Siena SpA, vol. 29(1), pages 83-109, 02.
- William F. Sharpe, 1977. "Bank Capital Adequacy, Deposit Insurance and Security Values, Part I," NBER Working Papers 0209, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Asli DemirgÃ¼Ã§-Kunt, 1989. "Deposit-institution failures: a review of empirical literature," Economic Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland, issue Q IV, pages 2-18.
- Sinkey, Joseph F, Jr, 1975. "A Multivariate Statistical Analysis of the Characteristics of Problem Banks," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 30(1), pages 21-36, March.
- Paola Bongini & Stijn Claessens & Giovanni Ferri, 2001.
"The Political Economy of Distress in East Asian Financial Institutions,"
Journal of Financial Services Research,
Springer, vol. 19(1), pages 5-25, February.
- Bongini, Paola & Claessens, Stijn & Ferri, Giovanni, 2000. "The political economy of distress in East Asian financial institutions," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2265, The World Bank.
- Honohan, Patrick & Klingebiel, Daniela, 2000. "Controlling the fiscal costs of banking crises," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2441, The World Bank.
- Leslie Teo & Charles Enoch & Carl-Johan Lindgren & TomÃ¡s J. T. BaliÃ±o & Anne Marie Gulde & Marc Quintyn, 2000. "Financial Sector Crisis and Restructuring: Lessons from Asia: Lessons from Asia," IMF Occasional Papers 188, International Monetary Fund.
- Gary Whalen & James B. Thomson, 1988. "Using financial data to identify changes in bank condition," Economic Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland, issue Q II, pages 17-26.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:iie:wpaper:wp01-6. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Peterson Institute webmaster)
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.