FX Swaps and Forwards: Missing Global Debt?
18 Pages Posted: 26 Sep 2017
Date Written: September 17, 2017
What would balance sheets look like if the borrowing through FX swaps and forwards were recorded on-balance sheet, as the functionally equivalent repo debt is? We combine various data sources to estimate the size, distribution and use of this "missing" debt and to begin to assess its implications for financial stability. A key finding is that non-banks outside the United States owe large sums of dollars off-balance sheet through these instruments. The total is of a size similar to, and probably exceeding, the $10.7 trillion of on-balance sheet dollar debt. Even when this debt is used to hedge FX risk, it can still involve significant maturity mismatches.
JEL Classification: F31, F34, F41
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation