Optimal Hedging of Funding Liquidity Risk
Journal of Risk, Forthcoming
Posted: 28 Mar 2013
Date Written: March 25, 2013
The management of a liquid asset portfolio that can be used to generate counterbalancing capacity in liquidity distress is quickly emerging as a core function in banks. The new Basel III liquidity risk regulation underscores the importance in banks managing a liquidity contingency buffer. The focus is on maintaining a high quality liquidity portfolio that can efficiently hedge liquidity outflows under stress scenarios. That is, to generate sufficient counterbalancing capacity. Since holding standby counterbalancing capacity has an opportunity cost the firm would like to hold the minimum cost portfolio that suffice for hedging out the negative flows. While the simplest way to build a liquidity portfolio is to hold affluent cash at hand this is not optimal for a profit seeking institution. In general, high liquidity assets, such as cash, are most costly to hold but are less costly in terms of execution cost when needed to create liquidity. In this paper we propose two, typically complementary, methods of finding the optimal liquidity hedging portfolio that can generate enough counterbalancing capacity with a high probability. The first method is through acquiring more assets that can generate future cash flows that can complement the potential net cash outflows. This method can be referred to as hedging with contractual cash flows that naturally complement the term structure of liquidity. The method can also be used when the strategy for executing the liquidity hedging portfolio is pre-determined. The second approach to liquidity hedging is to leverage dynamic counterbalancing capacity through use of credit facilities, asset sales and repo agreements in order to generate liquidity at the exact time when net contractual cash flows cannot balance by itself. The main contribution of this paper is to establish a sound quantitative liquidity hedging framework that unifies and makes possible applying the two liquidity hedging approaches consistently in practice.
Keywords: Liquidity risk, optimal liquidity hedging, counterbalancing capacity
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