Outside of financial crises, investors have little incentive to produce private information on banks’ short-term liabilities held as information-insensitive safe assets. The same does not hold true during crises. We measure daily information production using data from credit default swap spreads during the global financial crisis and the subsequent European debt crisis. We study abnormal information production around major events and interventions during these crises and find that, on average, capital injections reduced abnormal information production while early European stress tests increased it. We also link information production to outcomes: high levels of information production predict bank balance sheet contraction and higher government expenditures to support financial institutions. In an addendum, we show information production on nonfinancials dramatically increased relative to financials at the height of the COVID-19 crisis, reflecting the nonfinancial nature of the initial shock.
International Monetary Fund. Monetary and Capital Markets Department
This Technical Note discusses the findings and recommendations made in the Financial Sector Assessment Program for Ireland in the areas of nonbank sector stability. Both nonparametric and parametric methods suggest that the residential real estate market in Ireland is close to or moderately below its equilibrium level. Two standard metrics of price-to-income and price-to-rent ratios show that following a protracted period of overvaluation prior to the crisis and a correction afterward, the market has been close to its equilibrium level in recent quarters. Households have deleveraged, but are still highly indebted. The stability analysis results also suggest that vulnerabilities among nonfinancial firms have moderated in recent years.
Fernando Broner, Aitor Erce, Alberto Martin, and Jaume Ventura
In 2007, countries in the Euro periphery were enjoying stable growth, low deficits, and low spreads. Then the financial crisis erupted and pushed them into deep recessions, raising their deficits and debt levels. By 2010, they were facing severe debt problems. Spreads increased and, surprisingly, so did the share of the debt held by domestic creditors. Credit was reallocated from the private to the public sectors, reducing investment and deepening the recessions even further. To account for these facts, we propose a simple model of sovereign risk in which debt can be traded in secondary markets. The model has two key ingredients: creditor discrimination and crowding-out effects. Creditor discrimination arises because, in turbulent times, sovereign debt offers a higher expected return to domestic creditors than to foreign ones. This provides incentives for domestic purchases of debt. Crowding-out effects arise because private borrowing is limited by financial frictions. This implies that domestic debt purchases displace productive investment. The model shows that these purchases reduce growth and welfare, and may lead to self-fulfilling crises. It also shows how crowding-out effects can be transmitted to other countries in the Eurozone, and how they may be addressed by policies at the European level.
Mr. Jorge A Chan-Lau, Miss Estelle X Liu, and Jochen M. Schmittmann
This study finds that equity returns in the banking sector in the wake of the Great Recession and the European sovereign debt crisis have been driven mainly by weak growth prospects and heightened sovereign risk and to a lesser extent, by deteriorating funding conditions and investor sentiment. While the equity return performance in the banking sector has been dismal in general, better capitalized and less leveraged banks have outperformed their peers, a finding that supports policymakers’ efforts to strengthen bank capitalization.
We use the rise and dispersion of sovereign spreads to tell the story of the emergence and escalation of financial tensions within the eurozone. This process evolved through three stages. Following the onset of the Subprime crisis in July 2007, spreads rose but mainly due to common global factors. The rescue of Bear Stearns in March 2008 marked the start of a distinctively European banking crisis. During this key phase, sovereign spreads tended to rise with the growing demand for support by weakening domestic financial sectors, especially in countries with lower growth prospects and higher debt burdens. As the constraint of continued fiscal commitments became clearer, and coinciding with the nationalization of Anglo Irish in January 2009, the separation between the sovereign and the financial sector disappeared.
Even prior to the extreme volatility just observed, output growth volatility-following protracted decline-was flattening or mildly rising in some countries. More widespread was an increasing tendency from the mid-1990s for shocks in one country to transmit rapidly to other countries, creating the potential for heightened global volatility. The higher sensitivity to foreign shocks, in turn, appears related to stepped-up vertical specialization associated with the integration of emerging markets in international trade. Increased international spillovers call for stronger ex post coordination mechanisms when shocks are large but the best ex ante prevention strategy probably is sensible national policies.
This series contains practical "how-to" information for economists and includes topics such as tax policy, balance of payments statistics, external debt statistics, foreign exchange reserve management, and financial sector assessment.
Stephen Bond, Mr. Alexander D Klemm, and Michael B. Devereux
We re-examine the extent to which personal taxes on dividends are capitalized into the equity prices of domestic firms, using data from around the time of the 1997 U.K. dividend tax reform, which removed a significant tax credit for an important group of investors: U.K. pension funds. The tax-adjusted CAPM suggests that the impact should depend on an average of dividend tax rates across all investors, and that U.K. pension funds should reduce their holdings of the previously tax-favored asset: U.K. equities. Given that U.K. pension funds are small relative to the total size of the world capital market, a small open economy-type argument implies that the main effect of the reform would be to reduce U.K. pension funds' ownership of U.K. equities, with little impact on their price. We present evidence which is consistent with these hypotheses. We discuss why previous research (Bell and Jenkinson, 2002) reached a different conclusion.
We construct estimates of external assets and liabilities for 145 countries for the period 1970-2004. We describe our estimation methods and present key features of the data at the country and the global level. We focus on trends in net and gross external positions, and the composition of international portfolios, distinguishing between foreign direct investment, portfolio equity investment, official reserves, and external debt. We document the increasing importance of equity financing and the improvement in the external position for emerging markets, and the differing pace of financial integration between advanced and developing economies. We also show the existence of a global discrepancy between estimated foreign assets and liabilities, and identify the asset categories that account for this discrepancy.
En esta Guía se presenta información práctica y pautas para los economistas y se incluyen temas como la política tributaria, las estadísticas de balanza de pagos, las estadísticas de la deuda externa, la gestión de la reserva de divisas y la evaluación del sector financiero.