Bank capital, fire sales, and the social value of deposits

Douglas Gale, Tanju Yorulmazer

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    Abstract

    We describe a model in which bank deposits yield liquidity services and therefore earn a lower rate of return than bank equity. In this sense, deposits are a cheaper source of funding than equity. The bank’s equilibrium capital structure is determined by a trade-off between the funding advantages of deposits and the risk of costly default. Default is costly because banks assets are sold in fire sales, which transfer value to the purchasers. This transfer is a private cost for the owners of failed banks, but not a deadweight loss for society. As a result, deposits are under-used and banks’ funding costs receive a subsidy from depositors. This subsidy eventually causes banks to grow too large and accumulate too many assets.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    JournalEconomic Theory
    DOIs
    StatePublished - Jan 1 2019

    Fingerprint

    Bank capital
    Deposits
    Social values
    Funding
    Subsidies
    Assets
    Costs
    Equity
    Value transfer
    Deadweight loss
    Owners
    Rate of return
    Capital structure
    Bank deposits
    Trade-offs
    Liquidity

    Keywords

    • Bank capital structure
    • General equilibrium
    • Incomplete markets
    • Overaccumulation
    • Pecuniary externalities
    • Regulation

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Economics and Econometrics

    Cite this

    Bank capital, fire sales, and the social value of deposits. / Gale, Douglas; Yorulmazer, Tanju.

    In: Economic Theory, 01.01.2019.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    Gale, Douglas ; Yorulmazer, Tanju. / Bank capital, fire sales, and the social value of deposits. In: Economic Theory. 2019.
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