Shift in foreign exposures of the Dutch financial sector

Statistical News Release
Date 28 September 2012

The market value of foreign exposures of the Dutch financial sector to the rest of the euro area declined 1% during the second quarter of 2012. In addition, a shift took place with respect to the counterparty's home country within the euro area. For instance, exposures to Spain and Italy (together EUR  -14 billion) were reduced in size, whereas those to Germany and Austria (together EUR +9 billion) increased. Exposures to the Netherlands (EUR +26 billion) and countries outside the euro area, such as the United States and the United Kingdom (together EUR +16 billion), also rose.

The second quarter of 2012 saw the market value of the Dutch financial sector’s foreign exposures to the euro area decline slightly by 1%, compared to a 4% increase in the previous quarter, due to both volume and price changes. At the end of June 2012, the total value of foreign exposures to the euro area amounted to EUR 724 billion, 58% of which is held by banks, 29% by pension funds and 13% by insurers. Exposures include loans, shares and bonds.
Although the total size of foreign exposures to the euro area during the second quarter of 2012 hardly changed, a notable geographical shift took place within the euro area. Exposures of the Dutch financial sector to Spain (EUR -11 billion), Italy (EUR -3 billion), Ireland (EUR -1 billion), Portugal (EUR -0.5 billion) and Greece (EUR -0.5 billion) decreased in favour of Germany (EUR +8 billion) and Austria (EUR +1 billion). The decrease for the southern euro countries is true for Dutch banks, insurers and pension funds alike, whereas the increase of exposures to Germany only applies to insurers and pension funds. On the other hand, Dutch banks are mainly responsible for the increased exposures to Austria. The decline in exposures to the southern euro countries mainly relates to  sovereigns (EUR -6 billion) and banks (EUR -7 billion), whereas exposures to the private sector were more stable (EUR -2 billion). 
 

Exposures of the Dutch financial sector to selected countries

The ongoing uncertainty surrounding the financial markets and the continuing European sovereign debt crisis led to an increase in domestic lending and the exposures to countries outside the euro area. The exposures to the Netherlands (2%), the United States (4%) and the United Kingdom (4%) rose in the second quarter of 2012. In particular, exposures to private private counterparties increased sharply for these three countries.

Foreign exposure of the Dutch financial sector by counterparty sector , June 2012

The distribution of the exposures to the various countersectors varies considerably from country to country. For instance, the Dutch financial sector has comparatively many exposures to sovereigns in Austria (81% of total exposures), France (54%) and Germany (53%). By contrast, the private sector is the main counterparty for exposures of the Dutch financial sector in the United States (76% of total exposures), Ireland (78%), Belgium (71%), Portugal (69%) and Spain (68%).