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Intra- and inter-regional portfolio diversification strategies under regional market integration: Evidence from U.S. global banks

Eun-Joo Lee

International Review of Financial Analysis, 2017, vol. 54, issue C, 1-22

Abstract: This study empirically assesses whether being a part of any specific region affects global banks' decisions on capital allocation across 20 developed and 44 emerging markets by using data on U.S. banks in the period from 2006 to 2015. We find that both the intra-bank lending of a parent bank to its affiliates abroad and the local lending of foreign affiliates decrease as internal lending to neighboring countries within a region increases. This finding provides evidence of the negative spillover or contagion effects from regional allocations on the capital allocation of global banks to individual economies. Our findings reflect that financial markets are integrated within the region, which suggests no intra-regional diversification benefits to the United States or to other global investors. Moreover, parent banks' intra-bank lending translates into foreign affiliates' local lending in the host country. A policy implication is that countries in the same region should strengthen coordinated efforts to ensure free intra-regional capital mobility and diversify country-specific risk. The findings of this study can help enhance our understanding of the relationships between financial markets interconnectedness and global banks' portfolio management strategies.

Keywords: Portfolio diversification; Contagion effects; Global banks; Regional market integration; Internal capital markets (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: F34 F36 G11 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2017
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