Shareholder value and stability in banking: Is there a conflict?

Speech by Mr Jaime Caruana, General Manager of the BIS, at the Morgan Stanley European Financials Conference, London, 27 March 2012.

Abstract

Is there really a conflict between shareholder value and the public policy goal of safer banks? The evidence suggests not, especially over longer time horizons. Bank shareholders also stand to gain from the greater resilience of the financial system that regulatory reforms seek to achieve. Over time, the banks that have created the most value for shareholders have been those that performed well in both good and bad conditions. These tended to be less leveraged, they produced sustainable profits and kept risks and costs under control. Over the long term, only banks with a solid business model will generate sustained returns for shareholders.