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Managing sovereign credit risk in bond portfolios

  • Bruder, Benjamin
  • Hereil, Pierre
  • Roncalli, Thierry

With the recent development of the European debt crisis, traditional index bond management has been severely called into question. We focus here on the risk issues raised by the classical market-capitalization weighting scheme. We propose an approach to properly measure sovereign credit risk in a fixed-income portfolio. For that, we assume that CDS spreads follow a SABR process and we derive a sovereign credit risk measure based on CDS spreads and duration of portfolio bonds. We then consider two alternative weighting methods which are fundamental indexation and risk-based indexation. Fundamental indexation is based on GDP indexation whereas risk-based indexation uses a risk budgeting approach based on our sovereign credit risk measure. We then compare all these methods in terms of risk, diversification and performance. We show that the risk budgeting approach is the most appropriate scheme to manage sovereign credit risk in bond portfolios and gives very appealing results with respect to active management of bond portfolios.

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Paper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 36673.

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Date of creation: 15 Oct 2011
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Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:36673
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  1. Carmen M. Reinhart & Kenneth S. Rogoff, 2009. "This Time Is Different: Eight Centuries of Financial Folly," Economics Books, Princeton University Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 8973.
  2. Teiletche, Jérôme & Roncalli, Thierry & Maillard, Sébastien, 2010. "The properties of equally-weighted risk contributions portfolios," Economics Papers from University Paris Dauphine 123456789/4688, Paris Dauphine University.
  3. Francis A. Longstaff & Jun Pan & Lasse H. Pedersen & Kenneth J. Singleton, 2011. "How Sovereign Is Sovereign Credit Risk?," American Economic Journal: Macroeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 3(2), pages 75-103, April.
  4. Richard Cantor & Frank Packer, 1996. "Determinants and impacts of sovereign credit ratings," Research Paper 9608, Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
  5. Victor DeMiguel & Lorenzo Garlappi & Raman Uppal, 2009. "Optimal Versus Naive Diversification: How Inefficient is the 1-N Portfolio Strategy?," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 22(5), pages 1915-1953, May.
  6. Blake, Christopher R & Elton, Edwin J & Gruber, Martin J, 1993. "The Performance of Bond Mutual Funds," The Journal of Business, University of Chicago Press, vol. 66(3), pages 370-403, July.
  7. Merton, Robert C, 1974. "On the Pricing of Corporate Debt: The Risk Structure of Interest Rates," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 29(2), pages 449-70, May.
  8. Antonio Cesare, 2006. "Do Market-based Indicators Anticipate Rating Agencies? Evidence for International Banks," Economic Notes, Banca Monte dei Paschi di Siena SpA, vol. 35(1), pages 121-150, 02.
  9. Jens Hilscher & Yves Nosbusch, 2007. "Determinants of Sovereign Risk: Macroeconomic Fundamentals and the Pricing of Sovereign Debt," Money Macro and Finance (MMF) Research Group Conference 2006 114, Money Macro and Finance Research Group, revised 24 Apr 2007.
  10. Roncalli, Thierry, 2010. "Understanding the Impact of Weights Constraints in Portfolio Theory," MPRA Paper 36753, University Library of Munich, Germany.
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