HEC-Ecole de gestion de l'Université de Liège
HEC-Ecole de gestion de l'Université de Liège

The robustness of VaR models during the Ukrainian crisis and the impact of ESG scores on the results of US ETF backtests.

Litaudon, Orlane ULiège
Promotor(s) : Hambuckers, Julien ULiège
Date of defense : 21-Jun-2023/28-Jun-2023 • Permalink :
Title : The robustness of VaR models during the Ukrainian crisis and the impact of ESG scores on the results of US ETF backtests.
Translated title : [fr] La robustesse des modèles de VaR pendant la crise Ukrainienne et l'impact des scores ESG sur le backtesting des ETFs américains.
Author : Litaudon, Orlane ULiège
Date of defense  : 21-Jun-2023/28-Jun-2023
Advisor(s) : Hambuckers, Julien ULiège
Committee's member(s) : Moinas, Sophie 
Language : English
Number of pages : 87
Keywords : [fr] VaR, backtesting, market risk, Basel II, Basel III
Discipline(s) : Business & economic sciences > Finance
Research unit : HEC Liège
Target public : Student
Institution(s) : Université de Liège, Liège, Belgique
Degree: Master en sciences de gestion, à finalité spécialisée en Banking and Asset Management
Faculty: Master thesis of the HEC-Ecole de gestion de l'Université de Liège


[en] Under the supervision of the Commission de Surveillance du Secteur financier (CSSF), the financial regulator in Luxembourg, the management of tail risk for UCITS funds relies on the daily computation of Value at Risk (VaR), which is then backtested monthly to ensure its reliability. Consistency in VaR models is determined by the level of exceptions aligning with the confidence interval and their independence from each other. The robustness of VaR models has faced challenges during the Ukrainian crisis and the subsequent announcements by central banks regarding interest rate hikes. During extreme market events, VaR may not fully capture the risk, leading to the rejection of VaR models in the backtesting process.
This paper argues that parametric VaR methodologies applied to US ETFs exhibit greater robustness compared to historical and Monte Carlo methods during the shocks caused by the Ukrainian war. By comparing backtesting results, it has been demonstrated that the exceptions were independent from each other according to the Haas test, and the proportion of failure aligned more coherently with the estimated confidence level. This is attributed to the ability of parametric models to select the skewed student-t distribution, which effectively captures extreme downward movements in asset returns.
Previous research has examined the relationship between ESG scores and VaR levels, particularly during financial crises, and indicated a downward effect. This study aimed to assess whether there is a downward relationship between ESG scores and backtesting results, as a reduction in VaR level and lower sensitivity to extreme market shifts should correspond to a lower number of exceptions and an accepted VaR model. Surprisingly, the variables related to backtesting results, such as the number of exceptions and the results of the Kupiec proportion of failure test, were positively correlated with ESG scores and their sub-pillars (Economic, Social, and Governance). Furthermore, the fund with the lowest ESG score exhibited the fewest exceptions, and its VaR models were generally accepted by the different backtesting procedures, unlike other ETFs with higher scores. Therefore, for US ETFs during the Ukrainian crisis, no downward relationship between ESG scores and backtesting results was found.



Access Master thesis final version.pdf
Size: 1.44 MB
Format: Adobe PDF


  • Litaudon, Orlane ULiège Université de Liège > Master sc. gest., à fin.


Committee's member(s)

  • Moinas, Sophie
  • Total number of views 83
  • Total number of downloads 124

All documents available on MatheO are protected by copyright and subject to the usual rules for fair use.
The University of Liège does not guarantee the scientific quality of these students' works or the accuracy of all the information they contain.