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International Monetary Fund. Statistics Dept.
At the request of the Central Bank of Uruguay (BCU), and with the support of the International Monetary Fund’s (IMF’s) Western Hemisphere Department (WHD), a monetary and financial statistics (MFS) technical assistance (TA) mission from the IMF’s Statistics Department (STA) visited Montevideo during February 3-14, 2020. The main objectives of the mission were to: (i) review available source data for other financial corporations (OFC); in particular, insurance corporations (IC), pension funds (PF), and credit administration companies (CAC); and (ii) compile standardized monetary statistics for OFC (report form SRF 4SR) in line with the 2016 Monetary and Financial Statistics Manual and Compilation Guide (MFSMCG). The officials met during the mission are listed in Appendix I.
International Monetary Fund. Statistics Dept.
At the request of the Central Bank of Uruguay (BCU), and with the support of the International Monetary Fund’s (IMF’s) Western Hemisphere Department (WHD), a monetary and financial statistics (MFS) technical assistance (TA) mission from the IMF’s Statistics Department (STA) visited Montevideo during February 3-14, 2020. The main objectives of the mission were to: (i) review available source data for other financial corporations (OFC); in particular, insurance corporations (IC), pension funds (PF), and credit administration companies (CAC); and (ii) compile standardized monetary statistics for OFC (report form SRF 4SR) in line with the 2016 Monetary and Financial Statistics Manual and Compilation Guide (MFSMCG). The officials met during the mission are listed in Appendix I.
International Monetary Fund. Monetary and Capital Markets Department
This technical note presents risk analysis of banking and insurance sector in France. The assessment is based on stress tests, which simulate the health of banks, insurers under severe yet plausible (counterfactual) adverse scenarios. The stress tests reveal that banks and insurers would be resilient against simulated shocks, although some challenges remain. French banks have improved their capitalization and asset quality; however, profitability remains challenged. The report also highlights that profitability is pressured on both the income and expense sides. Banks’ ability to generate higher interest income is constrained by persistently low interest rates, and market businesses including trading activities have contracted in recent years. Growth-at-risk (GaR) analysis shows that the biggest contributing factors to the risk of growth are cost of funding and stock market prices. Financial conditions continue to tighten gradually since mid-2017; though the overall conditions remain accommodative. Risks stemming from loans to households seem to be contained over the short- to medium-term horizon, given relatively strong households’ balance sheets, no evidence of significant misalignment in house prices, social safety nets, and fixed interest rates.
International Monetary Fund. Monetary and Capital Markets Department
This Technical Note analyzes the key aspects of the regulatory and supervisory regime of banks, insurance companies and financial conglomerates (FCs) in Belgium. The regulatory framework for Belgian financial institutions has been strengthened substantially since the 2013 Financial Sector Assessment Program. Notably, new national banking and insurance laws have been issued, the Bank Recovery and Resolution Directive and amendments to Financial Conglomerate Directive have been transposed, Solvency II has been implemented, and the National Bank of Belgium has been designated as the macroprudential authority. This has improved significantly the regulatory framework and broadened its scope to better address the challenges posed by FCs. Financial sector supervision has also been upgraded markedly.
International Monetary Fund. Monetary and Capital Markets Department
This report assesses the risk management practices of Clearstream Banking Luxembourg (CBL) based on the Committee on Payment and Settlement Systems–International Organization of Securities Commissions (CPSS-IOSCO) Principles for Financial Market Infrastructures. The findings reveal that a range of principles are in broad observance. A key priority is to reduce CBL dependence on commercial banks in its daily operations. There is significant dependence on a limited number of depository and cash correspondent banks, in particular for the US and UK markets. This dependence could be actively mitigated through an increase in the number of contracted banks or, where possible, the establishment of direct links with local central securities depositories and central banks.
International Monetary Fund
Risks to macroeconomic stability posed by excessive private leverage are significantly amplified by tax distortions. ‘Debt bias’ (tax provisions favoring finance by debt rather than equity) has increased leverage in both the household and corporate sectors, and is now widely recognized as a significant macroeconomic concern. This paper presents new evidence of the extent of debt bias, including estimates for banks and non-bank financial institutions both before and after the global financial crisis. It presents policy options to alleviate debt bias, and assesses their effectiveness. The paper finds that thin capitalization rules restricting interest deductibility have only partially been able to address debt bias, but that an allowance for corporate equity has generally proved effective. The paper concludes that debt bias should feature prominently in countries’ tax reform plans in the coming years.
Mr. Andreas A. Jobst, Nobuyasu Sugimoto, and Timo Broszeit
Over the last decade, stress testing has become a central aspect of the Fund’s bilateral and multilateral surveillance work. Recently, more emphasis has also been placed on the role of insurance for financial stability analysis. This paper reviews the current state of system-wide solvency stress tests for insurance based on a comparative review of national practices and the experiences from Fund’s FSAP program with the aim of providing practical guidelines for the coherent and consistent implementation of such exercises. The paper also offers recommendations on improving the current insurance stress testing approaches and presentation of results.