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Making Banks Safer; Can Volcker and Vickers Do it?

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  • Julian T Chow
  • Jay Surti

Abstract

This paper assesses proposals to redefine the scope of activities of systemically important financial institutions. Alongside reform of prudential regulation and oversight, these have been offered as solutions to the too-important-to-fail problem. It is argued that while the more radical of these proposals such as narrow utility banking do not adequately address key policy objectives, two concrete policy measures - the Volcker Rule in the United States and retail ring-fencing in the United Kingdom - are more promising while still entailing significant implementation challenges. A risk factor common to all the measures is the potential for activities identified as too risky for retail banks to migrate to the unregulated parts of the financial system. Since this could lead to accumulation of systemic risk if left unchecked, it appears unlikely that any structural engineering will lessen the policing burden on prudential authorities and on the banks.

Suggested Citation

  • Julian T Chow & Jay Surti, 2011. "Making Banks Safer; Can Volcker and Vickers Do it?," IMF Working Papers 11/236, International Monetary Fund.
  • Handle: RePEc:imf:imfwpa:11/236
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Pozsar, Zoltan & Adrian, Tobias & Ashcraft, Adam B. & Boesky, Hayley, 2013. "Shadow banking," Economic Policy Review, Federal Reserve Bank of New York, issue Dec, pages 1-16.
      • Zoltan Pozsar & Tobias Adrian & Adam B. Ashcraft & Hayley Boesky, 2010. "Shadow banking," Staff Reports 458, Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
    2. Jonathan Fiechter & Inci Ötker & Anna Ilyina & Michael Hsu & Andre O Santos & Jay Surti, 2011. "Subsidiaries or Branches; Does One Size Fit All?," IMF Staff Discussion Notes 11/04, International Monetary Fund.
    3. Inci Ötker & Aditya Narain & Anna Ilyina & Jay Surti, 2011. "The Too-Important-to-Fail Conundrum; Impossible to Ignore and Difficult to Resolve," IMF Staff Discussion Notes 11/12, International Monetary Fund.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Maylis Avaro & Henri Sterdyniak, 2014. "Banking union: a solution to the euro zone crisis?," Revue de l'OFCE, Presses de Sciences-Po, vol. 0(1), pages 193-241.
    2. Edgardo Demaestri & Gustavo Ferro, 2013. "Analysis of the Integration of Financial Regulation and Supervision to the Central Bank," Ensayos Económicos, Central Bank of Argentina, Economic Research Department, vol. 1(68), pages 75-106, June.
    3. Beccalli, Elena & Anolli, Mario & Borello, Giuliana, 2015. "Are European banks too big? evidence on economies of scale," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 62936, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
    4. Carlo D'Ippoliti, 2012. "Josef Steindl: Introduzione: sulle cause reali della crisi finanziaria (Introduction: on the real causes of the financial crisis)," Moneta e Credito, Economia civile, vol. 65(260), pages 279-292.
    5. repec:spo:wpecon:info:hdl:2441/144pedpca18ff8v7fh3tvnp99m is not listed on IDEAS
    6. Labye, Agnès, 2013. "Quel avenir pour la banque universelle? Une analyse empirique appliquée à la zone euro," L'Actualité Economique, Société Canadienne de Science Economique, vol. 89(1), pages 57-86, Mars.
    7. Beccalli, Elena & Anolli, Mario & Borello, Giuliana, 2015. "Are European banks too big? Evidence on economies of scale," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 58(C), pages 232-246.
    8. Mario Tonveronachi & Elisabetta Montanaro, 2012. "Financial re-regulation at a crossroads: How the European experience strengthens the case for a radical reform built on Minsky's approach," PSL Quarterly Review, Economia civile, vol. 65(263), pages 335-383.
    9. Renato Maino, 2012. "Tackling the “Too Big To Fail” conundrum: Integrating market and regulation," FMG Special Papers sp207, Financial Markets Group.
    10. Andrew F. Whitman, 2015. "Is ERM Legally Required? Yes for Financial and Governmental Institutions, No for Private Enterprises," Risk Management and Insurance Review, American Risk and Insurance Association, vol. 18(2), pages 161-197, September.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Banks; Systemic risk; Business Models; banking; investment banking; hedge; hedging; banking services; Corporate Finance and Governance: Government Policy and Regulation;

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