An Analytical Approach for Systematic Risk Sensitivity of Structured Finance Products
Posted: 30 Oct 2013 Last revised: 15 Nov 2015
Date Written: 2014
The global financial crisis has shown that many financial institutions dealing with credit derivatives were exposed to severe unexpected losses. This indicates that systematic influences are decisively underestimated particularly with regard to structured products like securitized tranches of collateralized debt obligations. Our analytical study addresses these systematic effects: We provide a simple model which allows a closed-form comparison of both bonds and tranches with respect to their systematic risk. We demonstrate that the exposure to systematic risk of tranches may be many times higher than the exposure of bonds, even if both products share the same rating grade, e.g., an ‘AAA’ rating, measured by either default probability or expected loss. Particularly in economic downturns, default rates of tranches may be multiples of those of bonds. Our results help understand high default rates of tranches during the financial crisis and show that classical ratings are insufficient metrics for measuring risks of structured products.
Keywords: Credit derivatives, CDO, Bond, Ratings, Systematic risk
JEL Classification: C16, C50, G21, G24
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