DP13150 Foreign Expansion, Competition and Bank Risk

Author(s): Ester Faia, Sebastien Laffitte, Gianmarco Ottaviano
Publication Date: September 2018
Keyword(s): banks' risk-taking, Competition, Diversification, geographical expansion, Gravity, regulatory arbitrage, systemic risk
JEL(s): G21, G32, L13
Programme Areas: Financial Economics, International Trade and Regional Economics, International Macroeconomics and Finance
Link to this Page: cepr.org/active/publications/discussion_papers/dp.php?dpno=13150

Using a novel dataset on the 15 European banks classified as G-SIBs from 2005 to 2014, we find that the impact of foreign expansion on risk is always negative and significant for most individual and systemic risk metrics. In the case of individual metrics, we also find that foreign expansion affects risk through a competition channel as the estimated impact of openings differs between host countries that are more or less competitive than the source country. The systemic risk metrics also decline with respect to expansion, though results for the competition channel are more mixed, suggesting that systemic risk is more likely to be affected by country or business models characteristics that go beyond and above the differential intensity of competition between source and host markets. Empirical results can be rationalized through a simple model with oligopolistic/oligopsonistic banks and endogenous assets/liabilities risk.