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The Value of a Government Monitor for U.S. Banking Firms

Mark Flannery and Joel F Houston

Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, 1999, vol. 31, issue 1, 14-34

Abstract: Do federal bank examinations add value to the market's supervisory process? To address this question, the author investigates whether Federal Reserve inspections of bank holding companies affect the association between banks' reported book values and the market value of their equity. Using data from the fourth quarters of 1988 and 1990, he finds that the market is aware of bank examinations and takes them into account when valuing bank stocks. Apart from the obvious value they provide to regulators, examinations affect market values in several ways. In some instances, they provide useful certifying information which reduces risk and increases market value. In other instances, examinations induce additional regulatory risk which may reduce market value. The net effect of these results appears to vary over time, and across different types of banks.

Date: 1999
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Journal of Money, Credit and Banking is currently edited by Robert deYoung, Paul Evans, Pok-Sang Lam and Kenneth D. West

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