Banque nationale suisse

Jürg M. Blum: Why 'Basel II' May Need a Leverage Ratio Restriction


We analyze regulatory capital requirements where the amount of required capital depends on the level of risk reported by the banks. It is shown that if the supervisors have a limited ability to identify or to sanction dishonest banks, an additional risk-independent leverage ration restriction may be necessary to induce truthful risk reporting. The leverage ration helps to offset the banks' potential capital savings of understating their risks by (i) reducing banks' put option value of limited ex ante, and by (ii) increasing the banks' net worth, which in turn enhances the supervisors' ability to sanction banks ex post.

Angelo Ranaldo: Segmentation and Time-of-Day Patterns in Foreign Exchange Markets


This paper sheds light on a puzzling pattern in foreign exchange markets: Domestic currencies appreciate (depreciate) systematically during foreign (domestic) working hours. These time-of-day patterns are statistically and economically highly significant. They pervasively persist across many years, even after accounting for calendar effects. This phenomenon is difficult to reconcile with the random walk and market efficiency hypothesis. Microstructural and behavioural explanations suggest that the main raison d'etre is a domestic currency bias coupled with market segmentation. The prevalence of domestic (foreign) traders demanding the counterpart currency during domestic (foreign) working hours implies a cyclical net positive (negative) imbalance in dealers' inventory. In aggregate, this turns into sell-price (buy-price) pressure on the domestic currency during domestic (foreign) working hours.

Ibrahim Chowdhury and Andreas Schabert: Federal Reserve Policy viewed through a Money Supply Lens


This paper examines whether the U.S. Federal Reserve has adjusted high-powered money supply in response to macroeconomic indicators. Applying ex-post and real-time data for the postwar period, we provide evidence that nonborrowed reserves responded to expected inflation and the output-gap. While the output-gap feedback has always been negative, the response of money supply to changes in inflation varies considerably across time. The inflation feedback is negative in the post-1979 period and positive, albeit smaller than one, in the pre-1979 period. Applying a standard macroeconomic model, these roperties are shown to be consistent with a welfare maximizing policy, and to ensure equilibrium determinacy. Viewed through the money supply lens, the Fed has thus never allowed for endogenous fluctuations, which contrasts conclusions drawn from federal funds rate analyses.

Andreas M. Fischer, Gulzina Isakova and Ulan Termechikov: Do FX traders in Bishkek have similar perceptions to their London colleagues? Survey evidence of market practitioners' views


We ask whether FX dealers from Kyrgyzstan, a low income country, have similar perceptions to FX dealers from other international financial centers. Perceptions of Kyrgyz FX dealers in the interbank market are tested using detailed survey data against survey information from five major financial centers. The survey evidence finds that the FX dealers' responses from the Kyrgyz interbank market differ from those from other international financial centers. Stark differences arise in the perceptions concerning the effectiveness of central bank interventions and the influence of speculation.

Angelo Ranaldo: Intraday Market Dynamics Around Public Information Arrivals


I analyze the price discovery, liquidity provision, and transaction-cost components driven by the real-time firm-specific news at the Paris Bourse. I find that the news impact depends on which type of news bulletin is released. Only news items causing extreme price disruptions such as earnings announcements enlarge spreads and information asymmetry risk. In contrast, the greater part of real-time firm-specific news releases is a magnet for liquidity and trading. This research provides insights into the market quality of limit-order book markets in which liquidity provision dynamically adapts to market conditions and information events. Limit order traders sustain liquidity even when facing extreme news impacts.

Kevin J. Fox and Mathias Zurlinden: On Understanding Sources of Growth and Output Gaps for Switzerland


In this paper, we measure the main factors explaining nominal output growth and deviations from trend output in Switzerland over the period 1980 to 2001. The decompositions are based on the GDP function and its dual, the national income function. The results indicate that whereas nominal output growth frequently reflects movements in domestic prices, it is capital formation that makes the largest contribution to real output growth, followed by gains in total factor productivity and improvements in the terms of trade. Deviations of real output from trend appear to have been driven by deviations of labour utilization, of productivity and, during the first decade, of the terms of trade from their respective long-run trends. The important role attributed to productivity and the terms of trade support the view that the customary measures of the output gap should be used with caution when formulating monetary policy.

Petra Gerlach-Kristen: A Two-Pillar Phillips Curve for Switzerland


Historically, money growth has played an important role in Swiss monetary policy, until 1999 as a target and from 2000 onwards as an indicator variable. Since the new policy framework focusses on an inflation forecast, the question arises how useful money growth is for predicting future price developments. Using Swiss data, this paper estimates a model first proposed by Gerlach (2004) for the euro area that integrates money growth in an inflation forecasting equation. This "two-pillar" Phillips curve suggests that the low-frequency component of money growth, alongside current inflation and the output gap, helps predict future inflation. These results are confirmed by an alternative money-augmented Phillips curve proposed by Neumann (2003).

Urs W. Birchler and Matteo Facchinetti: Can bank supervisors rely on market data? A critical assessment from a Swiss perspective


Market data, such as bond spreads or equity price volatility, are a complementary source to bank supervisory information. In Switzerland, meaningful market data are available for a number of banks which constitute a major part of the banking system. Notwithstanding some limitations (biases due to state guarantee for cantonal banks and potential "too-big-to-fail" expectations for big banks) these market data are likely to play a supervisory role in the future. However, once the market expects supervisors to react to market data, these data become endogenous. This may jeopardize the very potential of market data to serve as policy guides.

Samuel Reynard: Money and the Great Disinflation


Using U.S. and euro area data, this paper presents a significant and proportional relationship between money growth and subsequent inflation when accounting for equilibrium velocity movements due to inflation regimes changes. These movements, driven by money demand adjustments to low-frequency Fisherian interest rate variations, are derived from consistent U.S. and euro area money demand specifications - after contradictory coexisting results are explained. Not accounting for equilibrium velocity and interest rate movements biases cross-country and time series dynamic money growth / inflation estimated relationships, and leads to the non-proportional, non-significant, and reverse causality results found in studies that include the post-1980 period.

Marlene Amstad and Andreas M. Fischer: Time-Varying Pass-Through from Import Prices to Consumer Prices: Evidence from an Event Study with Real-Time Data


This paper analyzes the pass-through from import prices to CPI inflation in real time. Our strategy follows an event-study approach, which compares inflation forecasts before and after import price releases. Inflation forecasts are modelled using a dynamic factor procedure that relies on daily panels of Swiss data. We find strong evidence that monthly import price releases provide important information for CPI inflation forecasts and that the behavior of updated forecasts is consistent with a time-varying pass-through. The robustness of this latter result is underpinned in two ways: an alternative CPI measure that excludes price components subject to administered pricing and panels capturing different levels of information breadth. Besides implying a time-varying pass-through, our empirical findings cast doubt on a prominent role of sticky prices for the low pass-through findings.


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