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Banks' regulatory capital buffer and the business cycle: evidence for German savings and cooperative banks

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  • Stolz, Stéphanie
  • Wedow, Michael

Abstract

This paper analyzes the effect of the business cycle on the regulatory capital buffer of German savings and cooperative banks in the period 1993-2003. The capital buffer is found to fluctuate anticyclically over the business cycle. The fluctuation is stronger for savings banks than for cooperative banks, as, for savings banks, risk-weighted assets fluctuate more strongly with the business cycle. Further, low-capitalized banks do not catch up with their wellcapitalized peers. The gap between low-capitalized and well capitalized banks even widened over the observation period. Finally, low-capitalized banks do not decrease risk-weighted assets in a business cycle downturn by more than well-capitalized banks. This finding seems to imply that their low capitalization does not force them to retreat from lending.

Suggested Citation

  • Stolz, Stéphanie & Wedow, Michael, 2005. "Banks' regulatory capital buffer and the business cycle: evidence for German savings and cooperative banks," Discussion Paper Series 2: Banking and Financial Studies 2005,07, Deutsche Bundesbank.
  • Handle: RePEc:zbw:bubdp2:4262
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Capital Regulation; Bank Capital; Business Cycle Fluctuations;

    JEL classification:

    • G21 - Financial Economics - - Financial Institutions and Services - - - Banks; Other Depository Institutions; Micro Finance Institutions; Mortgages
    • G28 - Financial Economics - - Financial Institutions and Services - - - Government Policy and Regulation

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