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A Transparency Standard for Derivatives

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  • Viral V. Acharya

Abstract

Derivatives exposures across large financial institutions often contribute to - if not necessarily create - systemic risk. Current reporting standards for derivatives exposures are nevertheless inadequate for assessing these systemic risk contributions. In this paper, I explain how a transparency standard, in contrast to the current standard, would facilitate such risk analysis. I also demonstrate that such a standard is implementable by providing examples of existing disclosures from large dealer firms in their quarterly filings. These disclosures often contain useful firm-level data on derivatives, but due to a lack of standardization, they cannot be aggregated to assess the risk to the system. I highlight the important contribution that reporting the "margin coverage ratio" (MCR), namely the ratio of a derivatives dealer's cash (or liquidity, more broadly) to its contingent collateral or margin calls in case of a significant downgrade of its credit quality, could make toward assessing systemic risk contributions.

Suggested Citation

  • Viral V. Acharya, 2011. "A Transparency Standard for Derivatives," NBER Working Papers 17558, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:17558
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    Cited by:

    1. Mayordomo, Sergio & Rodriguez-Moreno, Maria & Peña, Juan Ignacio, 2014. "Derivatives holdings and systemic risk in the U.S. banking sector," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 45(C), pages 84-104.
    2. Sakurai, Yuji & Uchida, Yoshihiko, 2014. "Rehypothecation dilemma: Impact of collateral rehypothecation on derivative prices under bilateral counterparty credit risk," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 48(C), pages 361-373.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • G01 - Financial Economics - - General - - - Financial Crises
    • G13 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Contingent Pricing; Futures Pricing
    • G18 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Government Policy and Regulation
    • G28 - Financial Economics - - Financial Institutions and Services - - - Government Policy and Regulation

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