Market Discipline of Canadian Banks’ Letters of Credit Activities: An Empirical Examination
The Service Industries Journal, Issue 22.4, 2002, 187-208
Posted: 16 Mar 2015
Date Written: 2002
While the motivation and riskiness of US off-balance sheet banking activities have been studied both theoretically and empirically, no such study has been found dealing with Canadian off-balance sheet banking activities, although such activities are numerically huge, and growing larger each year.
This article provides support for a market discipline hypothesis of Canadian bank letters of credit activities by employing several market measures of risk from one-factor and multi-factor models, and an implied asset volatility from the option-pricing model. Furthermore, it examines both price and quantity response of off-balance sheet activities in the Canadian banking market by employing a Tobit analysis to assess the robustness of our conclusions about market discipline. The results indicate that various market measures of risk and letters of credit are negatively related. Moreover, banks with greater portfolio risk measured in terms of equity and asset risk, high leverage and interest rate risk are less likely to issue letters of credit.
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