Bank Capital Adjustment Process and Aggregate Lending

79 Pages Posted: 22 Jul 2014 Last revised: 5 Aug 2014

Date Written: July 1, 2014


This paper proposes a new micro-founded measure to quantify the aggregate capitalisation of banking sectors taking into account both market discipline and regulatory constraints. It allows studying the connection between micro capital shortfalls from an implicit bank specific capital target and macro impacts of capital shortages on aggregate lending. (i) Our quantitative country-wide index of bank capitalisation is consistent with the qualitative reports of the ECB Bank Lending Survey. (ii) This index correlates with future fluctuations in aggregate lending,especially when a banking system is under-capitalised. (iii) The adjustment of capital constrained banks mostly impact loans to domestic non-financial agents. Thus our measure suggests that (a) countercyclical capital requirements may be less effective if market constraints are more important, and (b) slow moving balance sheet variables can help detect vulnerabilities and reversals in the lending cycle.

Keywords: implicit bank capital target, dynamic panel model, bank lending survey, aggregate lending, early-warning indicator

JEL Classification: C23, E51, G01, G21

Suggested Citation

Duprey, Thibaut and LÉ, Mathias, Bank Capital Adjustment Process and Aggregate Lending (July 1, 2014). Banque de France Working Paper No. 499, Available at SSRN: or

Thibaut Duprey (Contact Author)

Bank of Canada ( email )

234 Wellington Street
Ontario, Ottawa K1A 0G9

Mathias LÉ

Banque de France ( email )


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