Risk

Banks face a number of risks in order to conduct their business, and how well these risks are managed and understood is a key driver behind profitability, and how much capital a bank is required to hold. Bank capital consists principally of equity, retained earnings and subordinated debt.

After the 2007-2009 financial crisis, regulators force banks to issue Contingent convertible bonds (CoCos).These are hybrid capital securities that absorb losses in accordance with their contractual terms when the capital of the issuing bank falls below a certain level. Then debt is reduced and bank capitalization gets a boost. Owing to their capacity to absorb losses, CoCos have the potential to satisfy regulatory capital requirement.

Some of the main risks faced by banks include:

Credit risk: risk of loss arising from a borrower who does not make payments as promised.

Liquidity risk: risk that a given security or asset cannot be traded quickly enough in the market to prevent a loss (or make the required profit).

Market risk: risk that the value of a portfolio, either an investment portfolio or a trading portfolio, will decrease due to the change in value of the market risk factors.

Operational risk: risk arising from execution of a company's business functions.

Reputational risk: a type of risk related to the trustworthiness of business.

Macroeconomic risk: risks related to the aggregate economy the bank is operating in.

The capital requirement is a bank regulation, which sets a framework within which a bank or depository institution must manage its balance sheet. The categorization of assets and capital is highly standardized so that it can be risk weighted.

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