Risk Profile

From Open Risk Manual


Risk Profile is a general term that denotes an aggregate assessment of the level and nature of risk of a given entity.

In the context of lending institutions, a bank’s risk profile is more measurable than its credit culture. A risk profile describes the various levels and types of risk in the portfolio. The profile evolves from the Credit Culture, strategic planning, and the day-to-day activities of making and collecting loans. [1]


A risk profile is typically established after Risk Analysis. It may refer to risks at any level of granularity, e.g., the Credit Risk of a granted loan or the overall risk profile of the firm as a whole. In the later case the risk profile may be an explicit high level statement in the firms Risk Appetite framework.

The risk profile of a firm will change over time as portfolio composition and internal and external conditions change. The management of the risk profile over time is typically done as part of a Risk Appetite framework

Issues and Challenges

  • Assessing risk profile requires detailed examination: For example, two banks with identical levels of non-performing loans can have quite different profiles. Bank A’s loans might be fully secured and made to borrowers within its local market, while bank B’s loans are out-of-market, unsecured loan participations
  • A risk profile is relative to the size of a firm. The failure of a $3 million loan would hurt a $500 million bank than a $5 billion bank.


  1. Loan Portfolio Management Comptroller’s Handbook, April 1998 (Updated June 26, 2017, for Non-accrual Status)