Diversification and Performance in Banking: The Israeli Case
- First Online:
- Cite this article as:
- Landskroner, Y., Ruthenberg, D. & Zaken, D. J Finan Serv Res (2005) 27: 27. doi:10.1007/s10693-005-6411-6
- 254 Downloads
This paper analyzes performance and portfolio choice of banks’ investments across business units using methodologies developed mainly for equity investments. The backgrounds to the paper are major recent developments in the financial services industry, mainly consolidation in the banking industry that raised the issue of efficiency gains due to diversification. The paper focuses on banks in Israel as an extended case study, using the fact that Israeli banks have operated as (limited) universal banks for a long time. The results suggest that there are gains to diversification and that risk adjusted performance is mostly consistent with optimal portfolio choice. Most of the previous research in this area has been done in the US. These studies necessarily focused on hypothetical combinations of different business activities because of the legal limits on US banks. Thus this paper adds to the literature both by examining actual combinations and looking at another country.