Analysis of the Risk of Banks and Insurance Companies in Europe Using Accounting Information
In this article, I focus on accounting data that provide a view of the real economic activities of the various financial institutions, providing evidence on the diversification of the financial conglomerates. Using yearly data from the Eurozone market (plus the UK and Switzerland) over the period 1999-2014, I compute the correlations between various accounting and financial ratios of banks and insurance companies and compare them to other industries. I have found that the banking and insurance industries are positively (of net sales, gross profit, to net income), but not perfectly, correlated. Their level of correlation does not appear particularly high compared to the correlations between the banking industry and several other industries. There is room to do diversification for banks and insurance industries; especially when facing the interest rate risk.