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Jaime Leyva

17 January 2024
WORKING PAPER SERIES - No. 2892
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Abstract
The euro area insurance sector and its relevance for real economy financing have grown significantly over the last two decades. This paper analyses the effects of monetary policy on the size and composition of insurers’ balance sheets, as well as the implications of these effects for financial stability. We find that changes in monetary policy have a significant impact on both sector size and risk-taking. Insurers’ balance sheets grow materially after a monetary loosening, implying an increase of the sector’s financial intermediation capacity and an active transmission of monetary policy through the insurance sector. We also find evidence of portfolio re-balancing consistent with the risk-taking channel of monetary policy. After a monetary loosening, insurers increase credit, liquidity and duration risk-taking in their asset portfolios. Our results suggest that extended periods of low interest rates lead to rising financial stability risks among non-bank financial intermediaries.
JEL Code
E52 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit→Monetary Policy
G11 : Financial Economics→General Financial Markets→Portfolio Choice, Investment Decisions
G22 : Financial Economics→Financial Institutions and Services→Insurance, Insurance Companies, Actuarial Studies
G23 : Financial Economics→Financial Institutions and Services→Non-bank Financial Institutions, Financial Instruments, Institutional Investors
16 November 2022
FINANCIAL STABILITY REVIEW - BOX
Financial Stability Review Issue 2, 2022
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Abstract
The euro area insurance sector and its relevance for real economy financing have grown significantly over the last two decades. This box examines the effects of higher interest rates on the size and composition of euro area insurers’ balance sheets, as well as the implications of these effects for financial stability. The results suggest that the size of insurers’ balance sheets decreases materially after a monetary tightening. Such tightening also induces shifts in asset holdings, which lead to a reduction in credit, liquidity and duration risk-taking. Medium-term financial stability risks in the insurance sector could therefore decline amid rising interest rates.
JEL Code
E52 : Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics→Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit→Monetary Policy
G11 : Financial Economics→General Financial Markets→Portfolio Choice, Investment Decisions
G22 : Financial Economics→Financial Institutions and Services→Insurance, Insurance Companies, Actuarial Studies
G23 : Financial Economics→Financial Institutions and Services→Non-bank Financial Institutions, Financial Instruments, Institutional Investors