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The Macroeconomics of the Credit Crisis: In Search of Externalities for Macro-Prudential Supervision

Author

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  • Frank A.G. den Butter

    (VU University Amsterdam)

Abstract

This discussion paper led to publication in (E.F.M. Wubben (Ed.)) 'Institutions and Regulation for Economic Growth? Public Interest versus Private Incentives', 2011, pp. 187-209, Cheltenham: Edward Elgar. In the analysis of the credit crisis of 2007-2010 a clear distinction should be made between (i) the initial shock; (ii) the propagation and amplification of the initial shock to the systemic crisis of the financial markets; and (iii) the transmission of the credit crisis to the real economic sector causing a major cyclical downturn now known as the great recession. This paper argues that banking supervision failed to anticipate and repair the market failure that caused the huge amplification of the relatively small initial shock. As the repair of market failure is the only sound economic argument for regulation, banking supervisors should now focus on the externalities that caused the amplification of the shock and use that knowledge for adequate macro-prudential supervision in the future. Macro-economic models can be helpful in this search for externalities. The character and timing of future shocks are unpredictable, but contagion in the propagation mechanisms should be mitigated as much as possible.

Suggested Citation

  • Frank A.G. den Butter, 2010. "The Macroeconomics of the Credit Crisis: In Search of Externalities for Macro-Prudential Supervision," Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers 10-052/3, Tinbergen Institute.
  • Handle: RePEc:tin:wpaper:20100052
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. den Haan, Wouter J. & Ramey, Garey & Watson, Joel, 2003. "Liquidity flows and fragility of business enterprises," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 50(6), pages 1215-1241, September.
    2. Prasanna Gai & Sujit Kapadia & Stephen Millard & Ander Perez, 2008. "Financial Innovation, Macroeconomic Stability and Systemic Crises," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 118(527), pages 401-426, March.
    3. Gallegati Mauro & Greenwald Bruce & Richiardi Matteo G & Stiglitz Joseph E., 2008. "The Asymmetric Effect of Diffusion Processes: Risk Sharing and Contagion," Global Economy Journal, De Gruyter, vol. 8(3), pages 1-22, September.
    4. Jan Willem van den End, 2010. "Liquidity Stress-Tester: A Model for Stress-testing Banks' Liquidity Risk," CESifo Economic Studies, CESifo, vol. 56(1), pages 38-69, March.
    5. Ingo Fender & Janet Mitchell, 2009. "The future of securitisation: how to align incentives," BIS Quarterly Review, Bank for International Settlements, September.
    6. Ricardo J. Caballero & Alp Simsek, 2013. "Fire Sales in a Model of Complexity," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 68(6), pages 2549-2587, December.
    7. Diamond, Peter A, 1982. "Aggregate Demand Management in Search Equilibrium," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 90(5), pages 881-894, October.
    8. Avgouleas, Emilios & Goodhart, Charles & Schoenmaker, Dirk, 2010. "Living Wills as a Catalyst for Action," Working Papers 10-09, University of Pennsylvania, Wharton School, Weiss Center.
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    credit crisis; externalities; macro-prudential supervision; contagion; fallacy of composition;

    JEL classification:

    • E42 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Money and Interest Rates - - - Monetary Sytsems; Standards; Regimes; Government and the Monetary System
    • E58 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit - - - Central Banks and Their Policies
    • G38 - Financial Economics - - Corporate Finance and Governance - - - Government Policy and Regulation

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