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International Monetary Fund. European Dept.

Andorra’s large banking sector (with assets equal to 600 percent of GDP and assets under management—largely off-balance sheet—nearly 23 times the GDP), which is dominated by private banking, is a key feature of the economy. The aim of this paper is to systematically analyze its main features. Building on key stylized facts and cross-country comparisons, the paper discusses the implications of the business model of Andorran banks and the associated vulnerabilities, particularly those related to the reliance on foreign funding, the focus on private banking, and the use of internationalization to grow and remain competitive. These vulnerabilities and the exposure to risks calls for continued vigilance and strong supervision.