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Jel Classification:G01 

Discussion Paper
Good News, Leverage, and Sudden Stops

One of the major debates in open economy macroeconomics is the extent to which capital inflows are beneficial for growth. In principle, these flows allow countries to increase their consumption and investment spending beyond their income by enabling them to tap into foreign saving. Periods of such borrowing, however, are associated with large trade deficits, external debt accumulation, and, in some cases, overheating when these economies operate beyond their potential output level for an extended period of time. The relevant question in this context is whether the rate at which a country is ...
Liberty Street Economics , Paper 20180530

Discussion Paper
Outflows from Bank-Loan Funds during COVID-19

The COVID-19 pandemic has put significant pressure on debt markets, especially those populated by riskier borrowers. The leveraged loan market, in particular, came under remarkable stress during the month of March. Bank-loan mutual funds, among the main holders of leveraged loans, suffered massive outflows that were reminiscent of the outflows they experienced during the 2008 crisis. In this post, we show that the flow sensitivity of the loan-fund industry to the COVID-19 crisis (and to negative shocks more generally) seems to be even greater than that of high-yield bond funds, which also ...
Liberty Street Economics , Paper 20200616a

Report
Liquidity risk and U.S. bank lending at home and abroad

While the balance sheet structure of U.S. banks influences how they respond to liquidity risks, the mechanisms for the effects on and consequences for lending vary widely across banks. We demonstrate fundamental differences across banks without foreign affiliates versus those with foreign affiliates. Among the nonglobal banks (those without a foreign affiliate), cross-sectional differences in response to liquidity risk depend on the banks? shares of core deposit funding. By contrast, differences across global banks (those with foreign affiliates) are associated with ex ante liquidity ...
Staff Reports , Paper 676

Report
Simple and reliable way to compute option-based risk-neutral distributions

This paper describes a method for computing risk-neutral density functions based on the option-implied volatility smile. Its aim is to reduce complexity and provide cookbook-style guidance through the estimation process. The technique is robust and avoids violations of option no-arbitrage restrictions that can lead to negative probabilities and other implausible results. I give examples for equities, foreign exchange, and long-term interest rates.
Staff Reports , Paper 677

Report
Assessing financial stability: the Capital and Loss Assessment under Stress Scenarios (CLASS) model

The CLASS model is a top-down capital stress testing framework that uses public data, simple econometric models, and auxiliary assumptions to project the effect of macroeconomic scenarios on U.S. banking firms. Through the lens of the model, we find that the total banking system capital shortfall under stressful macroeconomic conditions began to rise four years before the financial crisis, peaking in the fourth quarter of 2008. The capital gap has since fallen sharply, and is now significantly below pre-crisis levels. In the cross section, banking firms estimated to be most sensitive to ...
Staff Reports , Paper 663

Report
A leverage-based measure of financial instability

We employ a model of leverage-induced explosive behavior in financial markets to develop a measure of financial market instability. Specifically, we derive a quantitative condition for how large levered investors can become relative to the whole market before the demand curve for securities suddenly becomes upward-sloping and small price declines cascade as levered investors are forced to liquidate. The size and leverage of all levered investors and the elasticity of demand of unlevered investors define the minimum market size for stability (or MinMaSS), the smallest market size that can ...
Staff Reports , Paper 688

Report
Bank Liquidity Creation, Systemic Risk, and Basel Liquidity Regulations

We find that banks subject to the Liquidity Coverage Ratio (LCR banks) create less liquidity per dollar of assets in the post-LCR period than non-LCR banks by, in part, lending less. However, we also find that LCR banks are more resilient as they contribute less to fire-sale risk, relative to non-LCR banks. We estimate the net after-tax benefits from reduced lending and fire-sale risk to be about 1.4 percent of assets in 2013:Q2-2014 for large banks. Our findings, which we show are unlikely to result from capital regulations, highlight the trade-off between lower liquidity creation and ...
Staff Reports , Paper 852

Report
International banking and liquidity risk transmission: lessons from across countries

Activities of international banks have been at the core of discussions on the causes and effects of the international financial crisis. Yet we know little about the actual magnitudes and mechanisms for transmission of liquidity shocks through international banks, including the reasons for heterogeneity in transmission across banks. The International Banking Research Network, established in 2012, brings together researchers from around the world with access to micro-level data on individual banks to analyze issues pertaining to global banks. This paper summarizes the common methodology and ...
Staff Reports , Paper 675

Report
Informational contagion in the laboratory

We study the informational channel of financial contagion in the laboratory. In our experiment, two markets with correlated fundamentals open sequentially. In both markets, subjects receive private information. Subjects in the market opening second also observe the history of trades and prices in the first market. We find that although in both markets private information is only imperfectly aggregated, subjects are able to make correct inferences based on the public information coming from the market that opens first. As a result, we observe financial contagion in the laboratory: Indeed, the ...
Staff Reports , Paper 715

Report
A private lender cooperative model for residential mortgage finance

We describe a set of six design principles for the reorganization of the U.S. housing finance system and apply them to one model for replacing Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac that has so far received frequent mention but little sustained analysis ? the lender cooperative utility. We discuss the pros and cons of such a model and propose a method for organizing participation in a mutual loss pool and an explicit, priced government insurance mechanism. We also discuss how these principles and this model are consistent with preserving the ?to-be-announced,? or TBA, market ? particularly if the ...
Staff Reports , Paper 466

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