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Determinants of US financial fragility conditions

  • Fabio C. Bagliano


    (Department of Economics and Statistics (Dipartimento di Scienze Economico-Sociali e Matematico-Statistiche), University of Torino, Italy)

  • Claudio Morana


    (Department of Economics, University of Milan-Bicocca)

The recent financial crisis has highlighted the fragility of the US (and other countries') financial system under several respects. In this paper, the properties of a summary index of financial fragility, obtained by combining information conveyed by the "Agency", "Ted" and "BAA-AAA" spreads, timely capturing changes in credit and liquidity risk, distress in the mortgage market, and corporate default risk, are investigated over the 1986-2010 period. The empirical results show that observed fluctuations in the financial fragility index can be attributed to identified (global and domestic) macroeconomic (20%) and financial disturbances (40% to 50%), over both short- and long-term horizons, as well as to oil-supply shocks in the long-term (25%). The investigation of specific episodes of financial distress, occurred in 1987, 1998 and 2000, and, more recently, over the 2007-2009 period, shows that sizable fluctuations in the index are largely determined by financial shocks, while macroeconomic disturbances have generally had a stabilizing effect.

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Paper provided by Department of Economics and Statistics (Dipartimento di Scienze Economico-Sociali e Matematico-Statistiche), University of Torino in its series Working papers with number 011.

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Length: 29 pages
Date of creation: Sep 2012
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:tur:wpapnw:011
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  1. Pástor, Luboš & Stambaugh, Robert F., 2002. "Liquidity Risk and Expected Stock Returns," CEPR Discussion Papers 3494, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  2. Fama, Eugene F. & French, Kenneth R., 1993. "Common risk factors in the returns on stocks and bonds," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 33(1), pages 3-56, February.
  3. Bagliano, Fabio C. & Morana, Claudio, 2012. "The Great Recession: US dynamics and spillovers to the world economy," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 36(1), pages 1-13.
  4. Claudio Morana, 2013. "The oil price-macroeconomy relationship since the mid-1980s: A global perspective," Working Papers 223, University of Milano-Bicocca, Department of Economics, revised Feb 2013.
  5. Working, Holbrook, 1960. "Speculation on Hedging Markets," Food Research Institute Studies, Stanford University, Food Research Institute, issue 02, May.
  6. Granger, Clive W. J. & Jeon, Yongil, 2004. "Thick modeling," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 21(2), pages 323-343, March.
  7. Carhart, Mark M, 1997. " On Persistence in Mutual Fund Performance," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 52(1), pages 57-82, March.
  8. Tobias Adrian & Erkko Etula & Tyler Muir, 2014. "Financial Intermediaries and the Cross-Section of Asset Returns," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 69(6), pages 2557-2596, December.
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