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THE CASE FOR MACRO RISK BUDGETING AND PORTFOLIO TRANCHING IN RESERVES MANAGEMENT

Authors
Disciplines
  • Economics

Abstract

The set of objectives in reserves management are normally predefined and include: protecting the economy against potential external shocks on the current account or on capital flows; invest the reserves minimizing the potential of a loss and ensuring the availability of international liquidity when necessary. Whereas the adoption of a floating exchange rate in theory reduces the need for reserves to protect against external shocks, in the context of free capital movements it will be a function of the efficiency of international markets. In practical terms, Reserves Management is a process with a high effective complexity. The manager is confronted with the randomness of markets – including its own through the impact on the Reserves of Central Bank intervention – and the regularities that arise from its guidelines (i.e. credit and market risk, as well as liquidity policies) and the foreign exchange intervention mechanisms. Recently, given the increase in the size of the foreign reserves in recent decades for some central banks, as a result and in response to globalization and more volatility on currency flows, portfolio foreign investment and other related factors as contagion effects, the pressure to generate long-term returns has increased. However, the goal of increased returns is subdued to the security and liquidity objectives in international reserves management. As a result, the process of asset allocation and the construction of an efficient set of investment guidelines, as well as a risk policy, must be framed by a liquidity policy and, generally, to an asymmetric exposure to risk where capital loses are to be avoided in specific time horizons; i.e. a fiscal year.

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