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Life below Zero: Bank Lending under Negative Policy Rates

Florian Heider, Farzad Saidi and Glenn Schepens

The Review of Financial Studies, 2019, vol. 32, issue 10, 3728-3761

Abstract: We show that negative policy rates affect the supply of bank credit in a novel way. Banks are reluctant to pass on negative rates to depositors, which increases the funding cost of high-deposit banks, and reduces their net worth, relative to low-deposit banks. As a consequence, the introduction of negative policy rates by the European Central Bank in mid-2014 leads to more risk-taking and less lending by euro-area banks with a greater reliance on deposit funding. Our results suggest that negative rates are less accommodative and could pose a risk to financial stability, if lending is done by high-deposit banks.Received April 17, 2018; editorial decision September 18, 2018 by Editor Philip Strahan. Authors have furnished an Internet Appendix, which is available on the Oxford University Press Web site next to the link to the final published paper online.

Date: 2019
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Working Paper: Life below zero: Bank lending under negative policy rates (2018) Downloads
Working Paper: Life below zero: bank lending under negative policy rates (2018) Downloads
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The Review of Financial Studies is currently edited by Itay Goldstein

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