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International Monetary Fund. Monetary and Capital Markets Department
While national authorities are still largely responsible for supervising the nonbank sector and applying the macroprudential framework, European Union (EU)-level organizations’ supervisory role is growing. Further convergence and strengthening of supervision of insurers and investment firms is consistent with the goals of an EU single market and financial stability. The macroprudential framework functions well but could be simplified and expanded to cover aspects of the nonbank sector.
International Monetary Fund. Monetary and Capital Markets Department
This Technical Note discusses the results of the stress testing of Belgium’s banking and insurance sectors. Belgium’s financial sector remains resilient in the face of the rising cyclical vulnerabilities, but there is a need for closely monitoring risks. Stress tests on banks and insurance companies confirm that they can absorb credit, sovereign, and market losses in the event of a severe deterioration in macro-financial conditions. All banks meet minimum capital requirements and none needs to draw down its capital conservation buffer over the stress horizon. The risk of interbank contagion through direct exposures is low. Insurance companies are also generally resilient and losses incurred in the stress scenarios by those that belong to banking groups do not threaten the soundness of those groups.
International Monetary Fund. Monetary and Capital Markets Department
This Technical Note discusses the findings and recommendations in the Financial Sector Assessment Program for the Netherlands on the insurance and pension sectors. The governance, accountability, and internal processes of the supervisors, operating under a well-functioning twin-peaks model, are robust. With two-tier boards that include independent members, and an internal audit department, the governance structure of both supervisors is vigorous. Detailed documentation supports the internal processes. Discussions are underway to determine a new structure for the pension system, which may include shifting risks to the participants.
International Monetary Fund. Monetary and Capital Markets Department
This paper presents an assessment of financial system stability in the Netherlands. The country is home to a global systemically important bank and a global systemically important insurer. The banking system comprises half of the financial sector and is concentrated in four domestic banks. Major reforms, driven by the European Union and global developments, have significantly strengthened financial sector oversight. The authorities’ response to the global financial crisis was far-reaching and addressed many deficiencies. The Single Supervisory Mechanism has enhanced bank supervision, as have strengthened capital and liquidity regulations. Insurance supervision is also stricter thanks to Solvency II, and there is a new framework for the pension sector.
International Monetary Fund
Standards assessments serve several important objectives but are not well integrated into Fund surveillance. Financial standards assessments, when undertaken in the context of FSAPs, are used to identify weaknesses in financial regulation and supervision, or other areas covered by international standards. However, those weaknesses are not specifically linked to the risks and vulnerabilities facing the financial sector. Conversely, the analysis of country-specific vulnerabilities in the FSAP does not contribute to targeting the standard assessment effort, since the assessment must be exhaustive and cover the entire standard.
International Monetary Fund
Significant legislative changes and regulatory developments have taken place in the Netherland’s insurance sector. The initial Financial Sector Assessment Program (FSAP) and the current assessment are benchmarked against the Insurance Core Principles (ICPs) issued in 2003. Progress has been made in addressing the recommendations arising from the assessment. The Financial Institutions Risk Analysis Method (FIRM) and the introduction of macroprudential supervision have strengthened The NetherlandsCentral bank's (DNB) risk-based supervision and market analysis. The updated regulatory framework has a high level of observance and the government has strengthened macro-prudential supervision to complement the traditional supervision approach.
International Monetary Fund
The global financial crisis has tested the effectiveness of supervision under the “Twin Peaks” model. The crisis revealed the strengths of the “Twin International Peaks” model, as decisions were able to be made in a timely manner to contain the crisis, and clear divisions of powers and responsibilities were instrumental in ensuring effective coordination between key agencies. However, the crisis also exposed certain areas where improvements could strengthen the “Twin Peaks” framework. Intensive and well-focused efforts are being made to strengthen the supervisory framework.
Mr. Gianni De Nicolo and Alexander F. Tieman
This paper assesses changes in synchronization of real activity and financial market integration in Western Europe and evaluates their implications for financial stability. We find increased synchronization of real activity since the early 1980s and increased equity markets integration since the early 1990s. We also find that measures of systemic risk at large European financial institutions have not declined during the period 1990-2004 and that bank systemic risk profiles have converged. At the same time, the sensitivity of bank and insurance systemic risk measures to common real and financial shocks has increased in most countries. Overall, these results suggest that the integration process does not necessarily entail an unambiguously positive effect on financial stability.
Mr. Nicolas R Blancher, François Haas, Mr. John Kiff, Ms. Oksana Khadarina, Mr. Paul S. Mills, Parmeshwar Ramlogan, Mr. William Lee, Ms. Yoon Sook Kim, Todd Groome, and Mr. Shinobu Nakagawa
The paper discusses the limits to market-based risk transfer in the financial system and the implications for the management of systemic long-term financial risks. Financial instruments or markets to transfer and better manage these risks across institutions and sectors are, as yet, either nascent or nonexistent. As such, the paper investigates why these markets remain "incomplete." It also explores a range of options by which policymakers may encourage the development of these markets as part of governments' role as a risk manager.
International Monetary Fund. Monetary and Capital Markets Department

Abstract

This paper analyzes aspects of global asset allocation. It examines how different institutional investors follow vastly different procedures when allocating assets, reflecting various time horizons, liability structures, and “cultural backgrounds.” It aims to provide some insight into the decision-making process of investors. The paper highlights that understanding the basis for investor decisions is useful when analyzing their asset allocation decisions and related capital flows across borders and asset classes. The paper also discusses the implications for financial stability of proposals and potential changes in accounting policy.