Research Discussion Papers, Bank of Finland
What drives loan losses in Europe?
(), Jarmo Pesola and Matti Viren
Abstract: We model banks’ loan losses with a panel of European
countries for the period 1982–2012 using three country-specific macro
variables: output growth shocks, real interest rates, and a measure of
excessive private sector indebtedness. We find that a drop in output has an
intensified impact on rising loan losses if the economy is excessively
indebted. This may explain differences in loan losses in different
recessions across time and across countries. For instance, the dramatic
output drop in Finland in 2009 did not cause large loan losses compared
with the Finnish crisis of the early 1990s because of the more moderate
level of indebtedness. Low interest rates during the recent recession may
have been another, perhaps the most important, factor mitigating loan
Keywords: loan losses; banking crises; indebtedness; (follow links to similar papers)
JEL-Codes: E44; G28; (follow links to similar papers)
27 pages, December 30, 2013
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- This paper is forthcoming as:
Jokivuolle, Esa, Jarmo Pesola and Matti Viren, 'Why is credit-to-GDP a good measure for setting countercyclical capital buffers?', Journal of Financial Stability.
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