Risk Management

Open Risk White Paper: Sustainable Portfolio Management - Attribution and Allocation of Greenhouse Gas Emissions

We develop an analytic framework that synthesizes current approaches to sustainable portfolio management in the context of addressing climate change. We discuss the different required information layers, approaches to emissions accounting, attribution and forward-looking limit frameworks implementing carbon budget constraints.

Reading Time: 3 min.
The frontpage graphic is adapted from Steffen et al. “Planetary Boundaries: Guiding human development on a changing planet". Science (2015). The Planetary Boundaries concept was proposed in 2009 by this group of Earth system and environmental scientists. The group suggested that finding a “safe operating space for humanity” is a precondition for sustainable development. The framework is based on scientific evidence that human actions since the Industrial Revolution have become the main driver of global environmental change.
Sustainability Is Not a Point It Is a Surface of Possibilities

Sustainability Is Not a Point It Is a Surface of Possibilities

Sustainability is depicted as a curve to bend, a temperature threshold to secure. A useful visual model is to see sustainability as a surface of possibilities. Achieving environmental objectives still allows widely differing choices that may not all be equally desirable.

Reading Time: 8 min.
Bending the Curve - Sustainability as a One Dimensional Exercise The opening of the Global Scenario Group report “Bending the Curve: Toward Global Sustainability” by Paul Raskin, Gilberto Gallopin, Pablo Gutman, Al Hammond and Rob Swart, published in 1998 goes as follows: Over the last few centuries, a mere heartbeat of historic time, humanity has moved to the brink of a new evolutionary milestone - the planetary phase of civilization. The world economy is expanding and becoming more integrated, profoundly reshaping the cultural and political landscape everywhere.

Offline Availability of Open Risk Manual Content

In this post we explore some offline availability options that are relevant for Open Risk projects and some first steps in this direction

Reading Time: 3 min.
Offline versus Online In computer technology and telecommunications, online indicates a state of connectivity over digital networks, and offline indicates a disconnected state. Both states have many sub-divisions. For example the type online access varies enormously according to the bandwidth and latency of connections. Similarly, people may be “offline” as not having network access or completely unplugged, as in not having access or using any electronic device. While the number of people, the fraction of time and the type of activities they engage on has rapidly expanded as digital technology increasingly diffuses, the online state is certainly not the default state and in many regions or population segment might be completely out of reach.

List of Commonly Conflated Financial Terms

In this blog post we discuss a number of financial terms whose precise meaning is frequently intentionally or unintentionally obscured. As a result those terms may, like a Rorschach Blot, mean different things to different people. Unlike this famous psychological test, ambiguity in weighty financial matters can have adverse consequences.

Reading Time: 13 min.
According to wikipedia Conflation is the merging of two or more sets of information, texts, ideas, opinions, etc., into one, often in error. This may lead to misunderstandings, as the fusion of distinct subjects might obscure analysis of relationships which are emphasized by contrasts. Why does conflation happen in the first place? There are several possible factors which in some contexts may be co-existing and overlapping: gratuitous (over)simplification driven by laziness or habit literacy gaps in either the originator or the receiver of information an objective to frame, mislead or otherwise be economical with the truth In this blog post we discuss a number of interrelated financial terms whose precise meaning is frequently intentionally or unintentionally obscured.
Introduction to the EBA NPL Templates

Introduction to the EBA NPL Templates

Reading Time: 3 min.
Summary: The Open Risk Academy course NPL270672 is a CrashCourse introducing the EBA NPL Templates. Content: We start with the motivation for the templates and the domain of credit data (to which NPL data belongs). We discuss three core classes that capture the essence of lending operations from a lenders point of view (Counterparty, Loan, Collateral). Next we explore classes that capture events in the lending relationship lifecycle (which we term NPL Scenarios).
Equinox: a Platform for Sustainable Project Finance Risk Management

Equinox: a Platform for Sustainable Project Finance Risk Management

On Earth Day 2021 we are happy to launch Equinox, an open source platform supporting sustainable project finance

Reading Time: 5 min.
Equinox is an open source platform that supports risk management and reporting of Project Finance. The platform integrates geospatial information with applicable regulatory and industry standards from EBA, PCAF and Equator Principles to provide a holistic view of the footprint of both individual projects and portfolios of project finance investments. Motivation Sustainability (understood in environmental, economic and social terms) is emerging as an undisputed constraint that will shape future human activity and more specifically how the financial system facilitates and empowers economic life.

Marking Pi Day 2021 With a Raspberry Pi Docker Image for OpenNPL

We celebrate Pi Day 2021 releasing an ARM version of the openNPL platform that is suitable for the Raspberry Pi

Reading Time: 2 min.
Celebrating Pi Day 2021 Pi Day is celebrated every year on March 14th. The reason of course is that the day is denoted in some calendars as (3/14), which evokes of 3.14, the first three digits of “π”. A thin excuse maybe but sufficient for the true believers to join along! The occasion represents an annual opportunity for mathematics and science enthusiasts to recite the infinite charms of Pi, including its irrationality, to talk to friends and family about math and its uses, and, when everything else fails, simply eat pie.
Stress Testing of the Future - A view from 2031

Stress Testing of the Future - A view from 2031

What is the future of stress testing? We speculate on how stress testing might look like in 2031

Reading Time: 13 min.
What is the future of stress testing? To speculate on the future of Stress Testing we need first a basic definition what stress testing is. Broadly speaking, the goal of Stress Testing is to assess how a system would behave under adverse conditions that - while not the most likely outcome with the knowledge of today - are within the realm of the plausible. There are, broadly speaking, two types of stress testing: The Real stress testing version and Hypothetical stress testing version.
Taxonomy of Uncertainty

Taxonomy of Uncertainty

We review and synthesize into a taxonomy a number of related concepts and terms describing uncertainty, risk, randomness and model risk

Reading Time: 14 min.
Risk, Randomness, Uncertainty and other Ambiguous Terms Uncertainty versus Risk is a popular discussion topic among risk managers, especially after major risk management disasters. The debate can get really hairy and drift into deep philosophical areas about the nature of knowledge etc. Yet the significance of having an as clear as possible language toolkit around these terms should not be underestimated. Practical risk management typically shuns too deep excursions into the meaning of things, yet that is not quite compatible with the use of sophisticated methods and tools (such as a Risk Model ) that assumes an understanding of the scope and limitations of “knowledge”.
openNPL 0.2 REST API implementation

openNPL 0.2 REST API implementation

The 0.2 release of openNPL exposes a RESTful API that provides easy standardized online access to NPL credit portfolio data conforming to the EBA NPL templates

Reading Time: 4 min.
openNPL 0.2 release: The open source openNPL platform supports the management of standardized credit portfolio data for non-performing loans. In this respect it implements the detailed European Banking Authority NPL loan templates. It aims to be at the same time easy to integrate in human workflows (using a familiar web interface) and integrate into automated (computer driven) workflows. The latest (0.2) release exposes a REST API that offers machine oriented access using, what is by now, the most established mechanism for achieving flexible online data transfers.
openNPL now Available in Dockerized Form

openNPL now Available in Dockerized Form

Open Source, cloud based management of Non-Performing Loan data following the European Banking Authority's templates with just a few keystrokes!

Reading Time: 1 min.
openNPL now Available in Dockerized Form: Following up on the first release of openNPL the platform is now available to install using Docker. Running openNPL via docker is the installation option that simplifies the manual process (but a working docker installation is required!). Docker Hub You can pull the latest openNPL image from Docker Hub (This method is recommended if you do not want to mess with the source distribution).
openNPL: Open Source NPL Platform - First Release

openNPL: Open Source NPL Platform - First Release

We introduce an open source platform that allows the easy management of non-performing loan data

Reading Time: 4 min.
Non-Performing Loans: The covid-19 crisis will certainly impact the concentration of Non-Performing Loans but given the special nature of this economic crisis compared (in particular) with the 2008 financial crisis it is unclear how precisely things will evolve. In a previous post and white paper (OpenRiskWP07_022616) we discussed the importance of advancing open and transparent methodologies for managing the risks associated with such credit portfolios. Effective management of NPL is also a top regulatory priority.
Risk Compensation: From Face Masks to Credit, Market and Systemic Risk

Risk Compensation: From Face Masks to Credit, Market and Systemic Risk

Reading Time: 7 min.
What is Risk Compensation? Risk Compensation is a behavioral model of human attitudes towards risk which suggests that people might adjust their behavior in response to the perceived level of risk. It follows that, depending on the strength of the effect, that it might counteract and even annul the impact of risk mitigation, if the updated attitude and behavior modifies the actual underlying risk Examples of potential risk compensation effects abound A prominent example of potential risk compensation in recent times that established the concept in more formal terms in public policy debates concerned the beneficial role of safety belts in automobiles.
Why is risk so poorly defined?

Why is risk so poorly defined?

Why is risk so poorly defined?

Reading Time: 5 min.
A survey of existing definitions of risk: When looking up the meaning of Risk we are confronted with a surprising situation. There is no satisfying and authoritative general purpose one-line definition that we can adopt without second thoughts. Let us start with the standard dictionary definitions: The online Merriam Webster Dictionary defines risk as the possibility of loss or injury The online Cambridge Dictionary opines that risk means the possibility of something bad happening The Oxford English (Concise, Hardcover!
Making Open Risk Data easier

Making Open Risk Data easier

We introduce an online database that allows the (relatively) easy publication of structured risk data

Reading Time: 1 min.
Making Open Risk Data easier: In an earlier blog post we discussed the promise of Open Risk Data and how the widespread availability of good information that is relevant for risk management can substantially help mitigate diverse risks. The list of Open Risk Data providers, particularly from public sector, keeps increasing and we are aiming to document all available datasets in the dedicated page of the Open Risk Manual.
NACE Classification and the EU Sustainable Finance Taxonomy

NACE Classification and the EU Sustainable Finance Taxonomy

Reading Time: 1 min.
NACE Classification and the EU Sustainable Finance Taxonomy: The integration of climate risk and broader sustainability constraints into risk management is a monumental task and many tools are still lacking. Yet there is strong support and bold initiatives from policy bodies and an increasing focus from the private sector side. The EU (Sustainable Finance) Taxonomy is one such initiative of fundamental significance as it attempts to map at a granular level economic activities with respect to their climate risk mitigation or adaptation potential and create tangible metrics and thresholds to measure progress (the ultimate anti-greenwashing treatment)
What constitutes a good risk taxonomy?

What constitutes a good risk taxonomy?

Reading Time: 4 min.
What is a Risk Taxonomy? There are formal definitions of risk taxonomies (and we will go over those below), but it might be useful to first look at a very intuitive example of a risk taxonomy: the classification of fire hazards (also known as fire classes) Everybody knows (or should know!) that the different types of fire (the underlying Risk in this context) cannot be treated the same way because they respond in different ways to the substances used to suppress the fire.
The limits and risks of risk limits

The limits and risks of risk limits

Reading Time: 2 min.
Limit frameworks are fundamental tools for risk management: A Limit Framework is a set of policies used by financial institutions (or other firms that actively assume quantifiable risks) to govern in a quantitative manner the maximum risk exposure permitted for an individual, trading desk, business line etc. Why do we need limit frameworks? A limit framework is expressing in concrete terms the Risk Appetite of an institution to assume certain risks.
Credit Portfolio Management in the IFRS 9 / CECL and Stress Testing Era

Credit Portfolio Management in the IFRS 9 / CECL and Stress Testing Era

Reading Time: 3 min.
Credit Portfolio Management in the IFRS 9 / CECL and Stress Testing Era: The post-crisis world presents portfolio managers with the significant challenge to asimilate in day-to-day management the variety of conceptual frameworks now simultaneously applicable in the assessment of portfolio credit risk: The first major strand is the widespread application of regulatory stress testing methodologies in the estimation of regulatory risk capital requirements The second major strand is the introduction of new accounting standards (IFRS 9 / CECL) for the measurement and disclosure of expected credit losses
Privacy-at-Risk

Privacy-at-Risk

Reading Time: 5 min.
The data privacy genie is out of the bottle: From Yahoo’s massive email data leaks, to Equifax’s exposing of sensitive data for a large segment of the US population, to Apple’s resisting the bypassing the security features of the iPhone, not a week goes by without some alarming piece of news around data privacy. The ramifications for the legal use of private digital data by companies and government and the consequences of illegal or unintended use are huge.