Banks are type of Financial Institutions that facilitate the flow of funds and are the back bone of the economy. So banks act as financial intermediaries to interact the deficient units with surplus units and in this the banks bear certain risks. One of the risks is the credit risk or default risk.
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A bank is exposed to this risk when it lends money from the money of the depositors and the borrower is unable to repay the debt. This risk is one of the major risks faced by banks and it has increased significantly over the years due to the global financial crisis of 2007. The financial crisis has exposed banks to huge amount to risks leading the banks to become bankrupt and insolvent. Banks have tried to reduce the impact by concentrating in particular sectors that is lending to a few sector mostly. In Pakistan, initially banks concentrated in agriculture sector and later they have shifted their focus to the manufacturing sector due to massive industrialization and potential in the sector. So now banks are lending around 30% of the total advances to the textile sector which is one of the largest components of the manufacturing sector. Though, this lending to a particular sector hasn’t borne the fruit for commercial banks. One of the major reasons is that the textile sector is facing awful times in the form of decline in exports in the US market as well as the European market. Now these markets are dominated by China. Pakistan currently faces an on going problem of energy shortage which has forced the textile sector to resort to other ways of meeting the energy gap. These alternative ways are costly and have thus led to expensive exports which are no longer lucrative in the international market. Hence, textile sector is unable to repay their debts and the banks bear the cost in the form of increased non performing loans.
Pakistan’s Banking sector is one of the sound sectors which comprises of major players in the financial market. These players are Financial Institutions particularly Banks like Muslim Commercial Bank, Habib Bank and Bank Alfalah and some foreign banks like Barclays and Citi Bank. As more and more products are being introduced by the banks, in an attempt to diversify, more choices are available to the consumer to invest his money hence banks are now shifting their focus from traditional or conventional modes of banking into modern and sophisticated modes. Now with the changes in the banks portfolio, banks are extending more credit and investing more. In this era of change, banks with their lucrative offers and products are paving an entirely new path for various modes of investment.
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