Believe Only What You See: Credit Rating Agencies, Structured Finance, and Bonds

36 Pages Posted: 29 Oct 2012

See all articles by Mahmoud Elamin

Mahmoud Elamin

Federal Reserve Banks - Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland

Date Written: October 29, 2012

Abstract

This paper identifies rating verifiability as a key difference that explains why credit rating agencies (CRAs) failed to mitigate information asymmetries in the structured finance market but succeeded in the bond market. Two infinitely repeated models are analyzed. In the first, the rating is unverifiable, and there is no equilibrium where the CRA reveals its information. In the second, the rating is verified with some probability, and full information revelation is guaranteed for any verification probability, when the CRA is patient enough. The interaction between verification probability and CRA patience is also analyzed.

Keywords: credit rating agencies, reputation, infinitely repeated game

JEL Classification: G2, D8

Suggested Citation

Elamin, Mahmoud, Believe Only What You See: Credit Rating Agencies, Structured Finance, and Bonds (October 29, 2012). FRB of Cleveland Working Paper No. 12-22. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2168463

Mahmoud Elamin (Contact Author)

Federal Reserve Banks - Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland ( email )

East 6th & Superior
Cleveland, OH 44101-1387
United States

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