Lending to business is central to economic growth because it supports investment by firms. Knowing how market participants view risk in the financial system can give the Bank of Canada information about future growth in business loans. In this note, we look at three market-based risk measures and find that sudden increases in the perception of risk in the Canadian banking system are associated with a weaker outlook for business loans and real gross domestic product.
We introduce a new proxy for measuring corporate bond liquidity, using the price of exchange-traded funds (ETFs) that hold corporate bonds. It measures the average liquidity across 900 corporate bonds every day, many more than other proxies used in previous Bank of Canada analysis. The new proxy nonetheless paints a very similar picture of liquidity conditions and confirms the previous findings: the liquidity of bonds has generally improved since 2010.