Country Risk Premium

What is Country Risk Premium?

Country Risk Premium is defined as the additional returns expected by the investor in order to assume the risk of investing in foreign markets as compared to the domestic country.

Investing in foreign countries has become more common now than it was before. A United States investor might like to invest in the securities of Asian markets, say China or India. This is as much alluring as risky it is. The geopolitical scenario is not the same in different regions of the world. There are risks associated with every economy, and Country Risk Premium is a measure of this risk. Since the certainty on investment returns in foreign markets is generally less as compared to domestic markets, It becomes vital here.

Country Risk Premium

You are free to use this image on your website, templates etc, Please provide us with an attribution linkHow to Provide Attribution?Article Link to be Hyperlinked
For eg:
Source: Country Risk Premium (

In our hypothetical example here, China faces its own sets of macroeconomic risks. These risks make investors skeptical about their investments. For any given asset, market risk premium, as believed by many analysts, does not capture the excess risk posed by the economic factorsEconomic FactorsEconomic factors are external, environmental factors that influence business performance, such as interest rates, inflation, unemployment, and economic growth, among more of the country.

Country Risk Premium Calculation

Country risk premia can be based on the yields on sovereign bonds because these securities give a good picture of the macro within a country. To a couple, it with the equity and bond market indices is to strengthen the risk measurement. Both these markets hold substantial amounts of investor monies, which make them a better indicator of country risk.

Country Risk Premium Formula

The formula for Country risk premium is:

Thus, more technically,

CRP = Spread on Sovereign Bond Yield * Annualized Standard Deviation on Equity Index / Annualized Standard Deviation on Bond Index

You are free to use this image on your website, templates etc, Please provide us with an attribution linkHow to Provide Attribution?Article Link to be Hyperlinked
For eg:
Source: Country Risk Premium (


Let’s see some examples of country riskCountry RiskCountry risk denotes the probability of a foreign government (country) defaulting on its financial obligations as a result of economic slowdown or political unrest. Even a little rumour or revelation can make a state less attractive to investors who want to park their hard-earned income in a reliable more premium calculation to understand it better.

You can download this Country Risk Premium Excel Template here – Country Risk Premium Excel Template

Example #1

If a country has an annualized return of 18% and 12.5% on equity and bond index, respectively, over a 5-year period, what is the country risk premium? The country’s treasury bond has yielded a 3.5% return, whereas sovereign bond has a 7% yield on a similar period.


Simple substitution in the formula above gives us the CRP.

Country Risk Premium Example 1
  • CRP = (7% – 3.5%) x (18%/12.5%)
  • CRP = 3.5% x 1.44%
  • CRP = 5.04%

Example #2

Calculate the CRP with similar yields as in the example above, other than the equity index yield, which is 21%.


Again, putting the values in the formula, we get

Example 2
  • CRP = (7% – 3.5%) x (21%/12.5%)
  • CRP = 5.88%

Notice that as the equity index yield goes up from 18% to 21%, the CRP increases from 5.04% to 5.88%. This can be attributed to the higher volatility in the equity marketEquity MarketAn equity market is a platform that enables the companies to issue their securities to the investors; it also facilitates the further exchange of these stocks between the buyers and sellers. It comprises various stock exchanges like New York Stock Exchange (NYSE).read more, which has produced a higher return and hence raises the CRP with it.

Country Risk Premium Calculation & CAPM

Country risk premium finds most use in the CAPM (Capital Asset Pricing ModelCapital Asset Pricing ModelThe Capital Asset Pricing Model (CAPM) defines the expected return from a portfolio of various securities with varying degrees of risk. It also considers the volatility of a particular security in relation to the more) theory. A CAPM model is a measure of return on equityReturn On EquityReturn on Equity (ROE) represents financial performance of a company. It is calculated as the net income divided by the shareholders equity. ROE signifies the efficiency in which the company is using assets to make more considering the non-systematic risk or firm risk where,

Re = Rf + β x (Rm-Rf)

We have two approaches to estimate Rebased on the inclusion of CRP.

  • One way to include country risk premium (CRP) is to add it to the risk-free and risky asset component. Hence,
Re = Rf + β x (Rm-Rf) + CRP
  • Another way to include CRP in the CAPM model is to make it a function of firm risk.
Re = Rf + β x (Rm-Rf + CRP)

Approach 1 differs from 2 in that Country risk is unconditional addition to every firm’s risk-return profile.

Example #3

Calculate the return on equity from the following information:

  • Risk-Free Rate (Rf): 4%
  • Expected Market Return (Rm): 8%
  • Firm Beta (β): 1.2
  • Country Risk Premium: 5.2%


From both the approaches, we have the following results,

Approach 1

Example 3
  • Re = Rf + β x (Rm-Rf) + CRP
  • Re = 4% + 1.2 x (8% – 4%) + 5.2%
  • Re = 14%

Approach 2

Country Risk Premium Example 3.1
  • Re = Rf + β x (Rm-Rf + CRP)
  • Re = 4% + 1.2 x (8% – 4% + 5.2%)
  • Re = 15.04%

Investors’ Perspective

While the equity risk premium gives investors the incentive to invest in risky assets in domestic markets, It provides further impetus to accept uncertainties in foreign markets. Some of the plus points of CRP are –

  • To a major extent, country risk premia clearly distinguish between the risk-return profiles of developed economies as against developing economies. Prof. Aswath Damodaran has summarized country risk premia & related components on a global basis. Below is an excerpt:
CountryEquity Risk PremiumCountry Risk Premium
Korea DPR22.61%16.65%


In simple words, Country Risk Premium is the difference between the market interest rates of a benchmark country in comparison to that of the subject country. Of course, the less attractive economies have to offer a higher risk premium for foreign investors to attract investments.

It is a dynamic statistic that needs to be continuously tracked and updated in analyses around financial marketsFinancial MarketsThe term "financial market" refers to the marketplace where activities such as the creation and trading of various financial assets such as bonds, stocks, commodities, currencies, and derivatives take place. It provides a platform for sellers and buyers to interact and trade at a price determined by market more and investments. It assumes many factors whilst ignoring many others. Country risk can be better estimated when every significant aspect is appropriately valued in terms of risk and return. Events such as the Russia-NATO conflict, tensions in the Gulf region, Brexit, etc. have will certainly have an impact on the geopolitical risk scenario.

Recommended Articles

This has been a guide to Country Risk Premium. Here we discuss its meaning and the formula used to calculate country risk premium along with some practical examples. You can learn more about finance from the following articles –