The IMF Working Papers series is designed to make IMF staff research available to a wide audience. Almost 300 Working Papers are released each year, covering a wide range of theoretical and analytical topics, including balance of payments, monetary and fiscal issues, global liquidity, and national and international economic developments.
We implement a three-step procedure to assess the extent of exposure to real estate in commercial banks. First, we demonstrate interest rates and income to be the major determinants of delinquency. Then, we adopt a stress testing approach to calculate the impact of any adverse changes in these determinants. This suggests that a 1.3 percentage point increase in mortgage interest rate leads to a 20 percent decrease in a typical bank's distance to default. Finally, we look at the cross-sectional differences and indentify the banks with rapid loan growth along with high cost-income ratio as the most vulnerable.