Credit risk is the possibility of a loss resulting from a borrower’s failure to repay a loan or meet contractual obligations. Traditionally, it refers to the risk that a lender may not receive the owed principal and interest, which results in an interruption of cash flows and increased costs for collection.
Excess cash flows may be written to provide additional cover for credit risk. When a lender faces heightened credit risk, it can be mitigated via a higher coupon rate, which provides for greater cash flows.
Credit risks are calculated based on the borrower’s overall ability to repay a loan according to its original terms. To assess credit risk on a consumer loan, lenders look at the five Cs: credit history, capacity to repay, capital, the loan’s conditions, and associated collateral.
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