Why Implicit Bank Debt Guarantees Matter: Some Empirical Evidence
28 Pages Posted: 25 Aug 2015 Last revised: 17 Nov 2017
Date Written: April 7, 2015
What are the economic effects of implicit bank debt guarantees and who ultimately benefits from them? This paper finds that “financial excesses” – situations where bank credit reaches levels that reduce economic growth – have been stronger in OECD countries characterised by larger values of implicit guarantees and where bank creditors have not incurred losses in bank failure resolution cases. Also, implicit bank debt guarantees benefit financial sector employees and other high-income earners in two ways, increasing income inequality. First, implicit guarantees are likely to raise financial sector pay. This is consistent with the observation of “financial sector wage premia”, or financial sector employees earning in excess of their profile in terms of age, education and other characteristics. Second, implicit guarantees are likely to result in more and cheaper bank lending. If so, well-off people tend to benefit relatively more since household credit is more unequally distributed than income.
Keywords: Bank funding costs, implicit guarantees for bank debt, bank failure resolution, finance and growth, finance and income inequality
JEL Classification: D63, E43, G21, G28, O47
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation