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Bankernas räntesättning och dess påverkande faktorer
Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Umeå School of Business and Economics (USBE), Business Administration.
Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Umeå School of Business and Economics (USBE), Business Administration.
2012 (Swedish)Independent thesis Advanced level (professional degree), 20 credits / 30 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

Since the financial crisis of 2007, the global financial market has been characterized by instability. At the same time the banks’ lending rates and its link to the reporänta have been in the spotlight in various debates in the media. The government with Anders Borg leading the charge has criticized the banks for not lowering their lending rates when the reporänta has been lowered. The banks defend themselves by saying that the reporänta does not have a direct link to their lending rates anymore. They explain that they do not finance their lending with the reporäntan and thus there is no direct connection. The thesis question reads:

How does factors that affect banks lending rates change in a period of financial crisis?

The purpose of this thesis is to contribute to the knowledge of the subject and provide support during future crises. We also want to educate the banks’ customers and give them a more in-depth understanding about how interest rates are decided and how they change during a period of financial stress.

We have answered our thesis question by studying four factors that affect banks’ lending rates. These four factors are risk management, regulations, competition and the reporänta. We have conducted a quantitative study with certain qualitative elements. The interest rates and other similar information have been gathered from DataStream, information has also been gathered from the banks’ annual reports. The quantitative data has been complemented by interviews with representatives from Handelsbanken, Nordea, SEB, Riksbanken and Finansinspektionen. We did not get the opportunity to conduct an interview with anyone representing Swedbank. The reason why we chose these banks is that Basel III mainly regulates these banks.

Our empirical evidence suggests that the banks image of the situation differs from the image presented in media and by the politicians. The banks think that the debate is simplified and that it focuses on the wrong things. Our quantitative data shows that reporäntan does not have the same relationship to the mortgages rates as it ones had. We also find that the competition in the banking sector is imperfect. According to our theoretical framework, a lack of competition should lead to higher lending rates. The competition has improved since the financial crisis and it could therefore not be an explaining factor to the increased difference between the reporänta and the banks’ lending rates. Our data also shows that the banking sector has been characterized by increased volatility since the financial crisis and that banks are not viewed as the safe investment as they once were considered to be. This, in combination with the new demands created by Basel III has led to increased borrowing costs for the banks. We also find that the reporänta still have an effect on other market rates but the effects are not as direct as they once were.

Our conclusion is that the market has been very volatile since the financial crisis. This has led to increased financial costs for the banks. Basel III has also changed the banks’ financial structure which has led to additional costs. The banks do not finance themselves with the reporänta anymore. Because of this we believe that the debate in media is a bit strange since the banks’ costs have increased since the financial crisis. We have also found that the banks’ lending volumes has increased drastically since 2002. During the same period we have concluded that the net interest margin has return to the same level as in 2002.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2012. , 80 p.
National Category
Business Administration
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-59605OAI: diva2:553350
Educational program
Service Management Program
Social and Behavioural Science, Law
Available from: 2012-09-19 Created: 2012-09-18 Last updated: 2012-09-19Bibliographically approved

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