Economic costs and benefits of imposing short-horizon value-at-risk type regulation

Regulators often set value-at-risk (VaR) constraints to limit the portfolio risk of institutional investors. For some investors, notably pension funds, the VaR constraint is enforced over a horizon which is significantly shorter than the investment horizon of the investor. Our paper aims to investigate the economic costs and ben-efits of this kind of regulation. Shorter regulatory constraint, on one hand, enables an institutional investor, like a pension fund, to avoid large losses when the investment environment worsens but, on the other hand, also limits the institutional investor’s ability to benefit from an increase in stock prices. We show that the cost introduced by the short-term VaR constraints might over weight the benefits brought by such constraints.

Netspar, Network for Studies on Pensions, Aging and Retirement, is a thinktank and knowledge network. Netspar is dedicated to promoting a wider understanding of the economic and social implications of pensions, aging and retirement in the Netherlands and Europe.

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