Business and Economics > Investments: Bonds

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International Monetary Fund. Monetary and Capital Markets Department
The Financial Sector Assessment Program (FSAP) carried out a focused review of the non-banks in the United Kingdom and systemic liquidity. It reviewed five areas: (i) The overall NBFI system, its links to banks and the rest of the world; (ii) NBFI direct lending to the U.K. economy; (iii) Sterling investment funds (OEFs, AIFs, and MMFs); (iv) CCPs; and (v) Systemic liquidity. The NBFIs are defined as all non-deposit-taking corporations, listed in Figure 1, and with the following limited coverage: Pension Funds and Insurance Companies are covered to the extend they lend to the economy and interact with CCPs; Investment funds only to the extent of Sterling Funds; and broker-dealers only to the extent they interact with CCPs. Regulatory aspects of NBFIs are covered in a parallel Technical Note (TN).
Mr. Heiko Hesse and Mr. Ken Miyajima
Globally, financial institutions have increased their holdings of domestic sovereign debt, tightening the linkage between the health of the financial system and the level of sovereign debt, or the “financial sector-sovereign nexus,” during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. In South Africa, the nexus is still relatively moderate, albeit rising, and the increased focus of the Prudential Authority on the associated risks provide reassurance. Options to mitigate such risks through the use of regulatory measures can be explored. However, absent the necessary fiscal consolidation and structural reforms, risks from the nexus to both the financial system and the sovereign will increase.
Luiza Antoun de Almeida and Ms. Diva Singh
In recent years, we have observed an increase in low-income countries’ (LICs) access to international capital markets, especially after the Global Financial Crisis (GFC). This paper investigates what factors—country-specific macroeconomic fundamentals and/or external variables—have contributed to the surge in external bond issuance by these LICs, which we refer to in our paper as ‘frontier economies’. Using data on public and publicly guaranteed (PPG) external bond issuance, outstanding PPG bond stock, as well as sovereign spreads, we employ panel data analysis to examine factors related to the increase in issuance by these economies as well as the reduction in their spreads over time. Our empirical study shows that both country-specific fundamentals (such as public debt, current account balance, level of reserves, quality of institutions) and external variables (such as US growth and the VIX index) play a role in explaining the increased amount of issuance and the decline in spreads of frontier economies’ sovereign bonds. The impact of some of these variables on issuance appears to reflect a country’s need to issue bonds for external financing (‘the supply side’ of bond issuance), while others appear to correlate more through their impact on investors’ appetite for a country’s debt (‘the demand side’). In addition, the impact of country-specific variables can also be affected by external factors such as global risk appetite. Our analysis of key factors that have contributed to increased market access for frontier economies over the past decade provides important information to gauge the prospects for their continued market access, and for other LICs to join this group by tapping international markets for the first time.