Systemic Risk Survey Results - 2019 H1

The Systemic Risk Survey is conducted on a biannual basis, to quantify and track market participants’ views of risks to, and their confidence in, the stability of the UK financial system.
Published on 11 July 2019

This report presents the results of the 2019 H1 survey, which was conducted by the Bank of England in the period between 22 April and 16 May 2019.

Confidence in the stability of the UK financial system

  • Confidence in the stability of the UK financial system over the next three years has increased. Respondents were more likely to judge themselves as being completely confident or very confident (31%, +7 percentage points since the 2018 H2 survey), and less likely to judge themselves fairly confident (63%, -7 percentage points).

Probability of a high‑impact event in the UK financial system

  • The perceived probabilities of a high-impact event in the UK financial system over both the short and medium term have decreased. The percentage of respondents judging the probability of such an event to be high or very high over the short term decreased notably (from 67% to 52% since the 2018 H2 survey), and by a slightly smaller amount over the medium term (from 60% to 51%).

Sources of risk to the UK financial system

  • UK political risk remained the most cited risk to the UK financial system (mentioned by 93% of respondents). But the  proportion of respondents who cited this risk decreased (-4 percentage points) for the first time since the 2017 H2 survey.
  • UK political risk also remains, by a considerable margin, the most frequently cited number one source of risk (mentioned by 69% of respondents).
  • Geopolitical risk (62%, unchanged) and cyber-attack (60%, -6 percentage points) were the second and third most cited risks respectively. The proportion of respondents that cited cyber-attack decreased for the first time since the 2016 H2 survey.
  • A slightly larger proportion of respondents cited either the risk of a global/overseas economic downturn (38%, +8 percentage points) or the risk of financial market disruption/dislocation (27%, +9 percentage points) than in the previous survey.

Most challenging risks to manage as a firm

  • UK political risk was cited as the most challenging risk to manage for the seventh consecutive survey (mentioned by 82% of respondents, +1 percentage point).
  • The proportion of respondents that cited cyber-attack among the most challenging risks to manage decreased for the first time since the 2017 H2 survey (52%, -3 percentage points), but it remained the second most cited risk in this category.
  • There was a slight increase in the proportion of respondents that cited the risks around regulation or taxation among the most challenging risks to manage (11%, +4 percentage points).
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