Oops

The Financial Stability Oversight Council, the Treasury-Fed-SEC-FDIC-etc.-etc. joint venture designated by Dodd-Frank to prevent another financial crisis, released its first annual report last night and can we just say that we love it?

The purpose of the report is to convery recommendations about where the regulators see systemic risk. Some are expected (bank capital and liquidity issues, derivatives clearing, high frequency trading, housing market stabilization), but there are also some things that have fallen out of headlines, like:

Rates carry trade. There’s been a lot of talk about the Fed’s zero-ish rates being a giveaway to banks who borrow short from the Fed, buy Treasuries, and clip the yield difference. This never made a lot of sense to us as a giveaway, but the FSOC does seem worried that the basic mechanics of it pose a systemic risk if long rates ever go up:

In light of a sustained, historically low interest rate environment, market participants should work to ensure that they have robust processes for measuring and, where necessary, mitigating their exposure to a range of interest rate scenarios. Preparedness to face unexpected rate changes or yield curve shifts will enable market participants to make a stable transition to a new rate environment, minimizing potential disruption to the system.

Credit underwriting. And not in subprime mortgages! Who knew, but the FSOC is no fan of covenant-light loans:

[T]here have been some indicators that credit underwriting standards might have overly eased in certain products, such as leveraged loans, reflecting the dynamics of competition among arranging bankers. Greater market discipline can be supported through robust due diligence practices and processes for monitoring and responding to developments in credit underwriting standards, including deal features that may allow borrowers to take on excessive risk.

Tri-party repo. The FSOC is actually pretty jazzed about the tri-party repo market that securities dealers use to fund their inventory, which makes sense as the inability to roll intraday funding was a big contributor to Lehman’s demise:

Given the vital importance and size of tri-party repo financing and the broad array of financial institutions active in this market, the regulatory community should exert its supervisory authority over the industry’s reform efforts … Chief among these priorities are enhancing dealer liquidity risk management practices, alleviating the propensity of cash investors to withdraw funding and exit the market when risk surfaces, and implementing mechanisms to manage a potential dealer default.

Money market fund stability. The FSOC is worried about runs on money market funds that might break the buck and wants, among other things, floating money market NAVs and “deterrents to redemption, paired with capital buffers, to mitigate investor runs.” So, gates on money market funds?

So that’s all good stuff for Congress to consider when they sort out the imaginary crisis they’re working on now.

But what we really like are the next two sections of the report, “Macroeconomic Environment” and “Financial Developments,” which are as good a summary as you’re going to get of the last five years in our financial system – clearly written, as brief as possible, and utterly comprehensive. We expect this report to provide as much material for reflection in the days to come as say an oversharey Gary Cohn profile. Best of all are the charts, which touch on every aspect of our financial system and even come with Excel backup (see here). If you’re a capital markets banking analyst and you’re not revising your “economic conditions” pitchbook pages based on this thing, you’re in the wrong line of work.

Here are just a couple of story lines to get you started:

1. You deserve a raise. Even accounting for the crisis, the financial sector contributes an increasing share of GDP even as it accounts for a decreasing share of payrolls (note differing timeframes/scales):

2. Banks vs. capital markets

There’s a theory that a key competitive advantage of U.S.-style capitalism is that our companies get so much of their financing from public capital markets rather than banks. Here’s what the FSOC has to say about that:

U.S. companies are overwhelmingly financed by capital markets and the share is growing over time:

Even our banks are increasingly financed by capital-markets-type financing (CP, repo) rather than traditional deposits:

Compared to other advanced economies, our biggest banks are relatively tiny, perhaps precisely because we rely so much on markets:

3. No one is entirely immune from crap i-bank-style graphics

Interconnectivity!

FSOC Annual Report (pdf)

Also: Watchdog Sees Financial Weak Spots [WSJ]

U.S. Systemic risk council recommendations [Reuters]

68 comments (hidden to protect delicate sensibilities)
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Comments (68)

  1. Posted by Yawn | July 27, 2011 at 2:57 PM

    You lost me at If

  2. Posted by Anonymous | July 27, 2011 at 3:11 PM

    Nice plug for ZH….AGAIN

  3. Posted by Brian1284 | July 27, 2011 at 3:11 PM

    Can someone with a CFA sum this post up inu00a0couple sentences?

  4. Posted by CFA Level I Candidate | July 27, 2011 at 3:12 PM

    Sure.nThis is too fucking boring to read.

  5. Posted by Not again | July 27, 2011 at 3:13 PM

    I don’t even have to look at the byline to see who wrote the story any more. u00a0Chart = Levine.

  6. Posted by Gues | July 27, 2011 at 3:14 PM

    Matt,nnYou got me. Only after the first scroll down I realized I was going to read the repor itself.

  7. Posted by Duck | July 27, 2011 at 3:15 PM

    Thanks Tyler, I mean Matt.

  8. Posted by Dr. Feel Good | July 27, 2011 at 3:29 PM

    Does Matt suck or does Matt suck? Seriously how does this guy go through Harvard and Yale law school being this boring? I guess there might be a circular reference in my logicu00a0somewhere.

  9. Posted by Dr. Feel Good | July 27, 2011 at 3:29 PM

    Does Matt suck or does Matt suck? Seriously how does this guy go through Harvard and Yale law school being this boring? I guess there might be a circular reference in my logicu00a0somewhere.

  10. Posted by Dr. Feel Good | July 27, 2011 at 3:29 PM

    Does Matt suck or does Matt suck? Seriously how does this guy go through Harvard and Yale law school being this boring? I guess there might be a circular reference in my logicu00a0somewhere.

  11. Posted by Randall | July 27, 2011 at 3:32 PM

    Don’t make it sound like sarcasm if it’s not. The jokes never came and now I just wasted DB time reading something I should have read for work anyway.

  12. Posted by Randall | July 27, 2011 at 3:32 PM

    Don’t make it sound like sarcasm if it’s not. The jokes never came and now I just wasted DB time reading something I should have read for work anyway.

  13. Posted by Randall | July 27, 2011 at 3:32 PM

    Don’t make it sound like sarcasm if it’s not. The jokes never came and now I just wasted DB time reading something I should have read for work anyway.

  14. Posted by DBCommentarius | July 27, 2011 at 3:33 PM

    Matt- marketing 101. Do people come to DB to read materials like these? I understand you have to earn your keep by producing things that generate traffic but this is entirely too serious for a tabloid. What’s next, another slideshow factory like Business Insider?

  15. Posted by DBCommentarius | July 27, 2011 at 3:33 PM

    Matt- marketing 101. Do people come to DB to read materials like these? I understand you have to earn your keep by producing things that generate traffic but this is entirely too serious for a tabloid. What’s next, another slideshow factory like Business Insider?

  16. Posted by DBCommentarius | July 27, 2011 at 3:33 PM

    Matt- marketing 101. Do people come to DB to read materials like these? I understand you have to earn your keep by producing things that generate traffic but this is entirely too serious for a tabloid. What’s next, another slideshow factory like Business Insider?

  17. Posted by HFguy | July 27, 2011 at 3:38 PM

    Thanks Matt. Good article. nnAlso on a side note: I do notice the trend to make DB more than just a gossip blog. Keep up the good work.u00a0

  18. Posted by HFguy | July 27, 2011 at 3:38 PM

    Thanks Matt. Good article. nnAlso on a side note: I do notice the trend to make DB more than just a gossip blog. Keep up the good work.u00a0

  19. Posted by HFguy | July 27, 2011 at 3:38 PM

    Thanks Matt. Good article. nnAlso on a side note: I do notice the trend to make DB more than just a gossip blog. Keep up the good work.u00a0

  20. Posted by NakedShort | July 27, 2011 at 3:38 PM

    Matthew “The Machine” Levine

  21. Posted by NakedShort | July 27, 2011 at 3:38 PM

    Matthew “The Machine” Levine

  22. Posted by NakedShort | July 27, 2011 at 3:38 PM

    Matthew “The Machine” Levine

  23. Posted by guest | July 27, 2011 at 3:41 PM

    and you would be ………..Mrs. Durden?

  24. Posted by guest | July 27, 2011 at 3:41 PM

    and you would be ………..Mrs. Durden?

  25. Posted by guest | July 27, 2011 at 3:41 PM

    and you would be ………..Mrs. Durden?

  26. Posted by Anon | July 27, 2011 at 3:44 PM

    Matt,nnFeels like ZH circa 2009, which is a good thing – industry vets without jobs and gag orders. Keep it up, but don’t slide into ZH’s conspiracy garbage or this place will turn into sodom and gomorrah.

  27. Posted by Anon | July 27, 2011 at 3:44 PM

    Matt,nnFeels like ZH circa 2009, which is a good thing – industry vets without jobs and gag orders. Keep it up, but don’t slide into ZH’s conspiracy garbage or this place will turn into sodom and gomorrah.

  28. Posted by Anon | July 27, 2011 at 3:44 PM

    Matt,nnFeels like ZH circa 2009, which is a good thing – industry vets without jobs and gag orders. Keep it up, but don’t slide into ZH’s conspiracy garbage or this place will turn into sodom and gomorrah.

  29. Posted by Anonymous | July 27, 2011 at 3:53 PM

    Sweet nerdariffic nectar nnn-Robert Parker, Post Connossieur

  30. Posted by Anonymous | July 27, 2011 at 3:53 PM

    Sweet nerdariffic nectar nnn-Robert Parker, Post Connossieur

  31. Posted by Brian1284 | July 27, 2011 at 3:53 PM

    I was looking for a response from someone with the actual CFA certificate but I guess since you have CFA in your name I trust you.u00a0

  32. Posted by Guesticle | July 27, 2011 at 3:55 PM

    This is making me appreciateu00a0the 100+ comment Greg Michael’s posts of yore.u00a0 What is DB becoming?

  33. Posted by Guesticle | July 27, 2011 at 3:55 PM

    This is making me appreciateu00a0the 100+ comment Greg Michael’s posts of yore.u00a0 What is DB becoming?

  34. Posted by Guesticle | July 27, 2011 at 3:55 PM

    This is making me appreciateu00a0the 100+ comment Greg Michael’s posts of yore.u00a0 What is DB becoming?

  35. Posted by Guest | July 27, 2011 at 4:10 PM

    Shutup brian.

  36. Posted by Guest | July 27, 2011 at 4:10 PM

    Shutup brian.

  37. Posted by Guest | July 27, 2011 at 4:10 PM

    Shutup brian.

  38. Posted by Lot | July 27, 2011 at 4:30 PM

    Hey!!

  39. Posted by Lot | July 27, 2011 at 4:30 PM

    Hey!!

  40. Posted by Lot | July 27, 2011 at 4:30 PM

    Hey!!

  41. Posted by InfiniteGuest | July 27, 2011 at 4:31 PM

    In future please don’t number bullets. OTTIHNC.

  42. Posted by InfiniteGuest | July 27, 2011 at 4:31 PM

    In future please don’t number bullets. OTTIHNC.

  43. Posted by InfiniteGuest | July 27, 2011 at 4:31 PM

    In future please don’t number bullets. OTTIHNC.

  44. Posted by Gues | July 27, 2011 at 4:49 PM

    u00a0This is serious. Matt’s showing clear signs of pitch book abstinence.

  45. Posted by Gues | July 27, 2011 at 4:49 PM

    u00a0This is serious. Matt’s showing clear signs of pitch book abstinence.

  46. Posted by Gues | July 27, 2011 at 4:49 PM

    u00a0This is serious. Matt’s showing clear signs of pitch book abstinence.

  47. Posted by Guest | July 27, 2011 at 4:54 PM

    We do deserve raises.nnOr at least Lightsquared shares.nn–UBS quant late for his afternoon shift at Whole Foods.

  48. Posted by Guest | July 27, 2011 at 4:54 PM

    We do deserve raises.nnOr at least Lightsquared shares.nn–UBS quant late for his afternoon shift at Whole Foods.

  49. Posted by Guest | July 27, 2011 at 4:54 PM

    We do deserve raises.nnOr at least Lightsquared shares.nn–UBS quant late for his afternoon shift at Whole Foods.

  50. Posted by bored little jerk | July 27, 2011 at 4:57 PM

    This post was gay.nn-Guy who’s insults never matured beyond 7th grade.

  51. Posted by bored little jerk | July 27, 2011 at 4:57 PM

    This post was gay.nn-Guy who’s insults never matured beyond 7th grade.

  52. Posted by bored little jerk | July 27, 2011 at 4:57 PM

    This post was gay.nn-Guy who’s insults never matured beyond 7th grade.

  53. Posted by Brian1284 | July 27, 2011 at 5:03 PM

    Relax hotshot, next time when you comment try to contribute something to the team.

  54. Posted by Brian1284 | July 27, 2011 at 5:03 PM

    Relax hotshot, next time when you comment try to contribute something to the team.

  55. Posted by Brian1284 | July 27, 2011 at 5:03 PM

    Relax hotshot, next time when you comment try to contribute something to the team.

  56. Posted by Anonymous | July 27, 2011 at 5:42 PM

    FUCK THE MACHINE

  57. Posted by Guest | July 27, 2011 at 6:05 PM

    all CFA’s are clearly hung over today

  58. Posted by Also A Guest | July 27, 2011 at 6:10 PM

    The title starts of with a HUGE “if”, and then proceeds into an article with an even bigger “WTF?”

  59. Posted by Linguisticality | July 27, 2011 at 6:14 PM

    Yo! u00a0Spellcheck pleeze…”The purpose of the report is to convery…” u00a0WTF is a “convery”??? u00a0I’m trying to convey a message here. u00a0But you ain’t listening…u00a0

  60. Posted by Guest | July 27, 2011 at 7:10 PM

    FYI, Business Insider is more tabloid-y than Dealbreaker has ever been.

  61. Posted by Guest | July 27, 2011 at 7:10 PM

    Why don’t you step up to the plate, champ?

  62. Posted by PeterS194 | July 27, 2011 at 9:26 PM

    “Even our banks are increasingly financed by capital-markets-type financing” nn”were” would be better suited there

  63. Posted by Anonymous | July 27, 2011 at 9:26 PM

    Rage against the machine too

  64. Posted by Deez Nutz | July 28, 2011 at 3:28 PM

    I stopped reading after the word “The”

  65. Posted by Deez Nutz | July 28, 2011 at 3:28 PM

    I stopped reading after the word “The”

  66. Posted by Thick Glasses | July 29, 2011 at 3:37 PM

    Matt,u00a0 I think you;’ve got this report exactly wrong on the “carry trade” issue.u00a0 You seem to think that authors are concerned that the carry trade will come to a sudden end as the yield curve flattens, bursting their bubble.u00a0 But they aren’t.u00a0 They are concerned, rather, that risk managers aren’t taking adequate account of the dangers of a steepening of the yield curve.u00a0 See pp. 136-37 especially.

  67. Posted by web design | April 18, 2012 at 10:44 AM

    vmTDBW Awesome blog.Really thank you! Great.

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