LLB AG’s risk policy is governed, in legal and operative terms, by the Liechtenstein Banking Law, the corresponding Banking Ordinance and the principles of the Basel Committee for Banking Supervision as well as by the bank’s own statutes and business regulations. The ultimate responsibility for basic risk policy and for continually monitoring the bank’s risk exposure lies with the Board of Directors. In fulfilling this function, it is supported by the Risk Committee. The Board of Management has overall responsibility for risk management. It is supported by separate expert risk committees. An independent Group Credit & Risk Management monitors compliance with the issued regulations.
On the basis of its business activity, LLB AG is exposed primarily to interest rate fluctuation, share price and currency risks. The Group Risk Management Committee is responsible for managing risks associated with trading activities, and the Asset & Liability Committee for controlling interest rate fluctuation risks. These bodies limit risk exposure using sensitivity and value-at-risk analyses. Aggregate risks are analysed and worst-case scenarios are simulated on a regular basis.
Credit default risks
Credit and lending facilities are extended primarily in interbank business, in private and corporate client business mainly on a secured basis, and in business transactions with public authorities. The Group Credit Risk Committee is responsible for credit risk management. The bank pursues a conservative collateral lending policy. Credits and loans are granted within the scope of strict credit approval procedures. An internal rating system is employed to determine risk-related terms and conditions. A limits system based on the creditworthiness of the individual country is used to control country risks.
In order to ensure responsible lending and to take account of the increasing regulatory requirements, each property must be valued and the loan-to-value ratio determined. The valuation is made in accordance with professionally recognised methods and techniques. The internal work manual “Real Estate Valuations” forms the basis for determining a market-conforming loan-to-value ratio for real estate in the Swiss and Liechtenstein markets of the LLB Group. The decisive factor for the valuation method and tool to be applied is always the predominant use or the predominant income measured by the rental value.
- Single-family houses and condominiums for own use are generally valued hedonically in Switzerland and by the tangible asset method in Liechtenstein.
- Rented single-family houses and condominiums that are held for yield purposes are generally valued hedonically in Switzerland. In Liechtenstein, the valuation is carried out using the tangible asset method.
- Income-producing and investment properties in Switzerland and in Liechtenstein, such as apartment buildings, residential and commercial buildings, commercial properties, etc., are, as a rule, valued using the capitalised earnings value method.
- In the case of commercially owner-occupied properties, the capitalised earnings value is decisive, which is determined and verified in advance on the basis of the space rent reported in the borrower’s income statement.
- Agricultural properties in Switzerland are valued according to the Ordinance on rural land rights. In Liechtenstein, these are valued using the tangible asset method.
- Valuations of building land are based on current market conditions.
Operational and legal risks
Internal regulations and directives concerning organisation and controls are employed to limit exposure to operative and legal risks. In formulating these instructions, the Board of Management is supported by the Operational Risk Committee. Compliance with these regulations is regularly checked by the Group Compliance and Group Operational Risk / ICS departments and by Group Internal Audit. External legal experts are brought in on a case-by-case basis to control and manage legal risks.
Liquidity risks are monitored and managed in accordance with the provisions of banking law.
Business policy concerning the use of derivative financial instruments
Within the scope of balance sheet management, interest rate swaps are concluded to hedge interest rate fluctuation risks. Furthermore, derivative financial instruments are employed primarily within the context of transactions for clients. Both standardised and OTC derivatives are traded for the account of clients.