Measuring Liquidity of Spanish Debt
54 Pages Posted: 10 Jun 2019
Date Written: 2017
Assessing liquidity in fixed-income markets is becoming very important in the cur-rent context of extremely low interest rates which, in general terms, is encouraging the acquisition of riskier and (potentially) less liquid assets. Although there is the perception that bond market liquidity could have worsened over the last years in international markets, none of the current studies has reached a clear conclusion. In this paper, we propose a liquidity synthetic indicator (LSI) on Spanish debt, applying the methodology that Broto and Lamas (2016) used for US markets. We compute six individual liquidity indicators that represent the elements that characterise a liquid market (tightness, resilience, depth and breadth). We use price and transaction-based indicators for government and corporate debt when data is available for the period 2005-2016. Our LSI shows several episodes of significant worsening in liquidity conditions, related to the Lehman Brothers’ collapse and the European sovereign debt crisis. After a sizeable improvement of liquidity in 2013-2014, the liquidity indicator has deteriorated over the past months as a consequence of lower trading volumes. The current ultra-low interest rate environment and more capital demanding regulations could partially explain these results.
Keywords: liquidity measures, synthetic indicator, Spanish fixed-income market
JEL Classification: G01, G10, G15, C43
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation