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Interconnectedness in the CDS Market

April 28, 2014

Giulio Girardi, Craig Lewis and Mila Getmansky


Concentrated risks in markets for credit default swaps (CDS) are widely considered to have significantly contributed to the recent financial crisis. In this paper we study the structure of the CDS market using explicit connections based on the total number of CDS transactions, notional value of CDS transactions, and network diagrams. The main objective is to provide statistics that characterize the CDS market, the degree of counterparty concentration, the size of different contracts as well as underlying contractual features, and a preliminary analysis of interconnectivity. Our new approach informs the discussion of the structure and resulting fragility or stability of the CDS market and studies potential contagion among its participants.


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