||Recent episodes of financial instability have motivated researchers as well as policy makers to intensify research on financial stability. This thesis contributes to current research and policy discussion by elaborating and empirically testing methodologies, which can be used to measure financial sector vulnerabilities and identify potential risks for financial stability. It further focuses on the link between real and the financial sector as well as possible implications of household financial distress on the aggregate economy. Together with the proposed framework we provide the survey of the current literature on these topics as well as the empirical results. We argue in favour of stress testing methodologies covering the key risks on banks’ balance sheets. These frameworks can also be used for emerging markets where data availability is typically limited. It is shown that due to high volatility of credit growth in emerging economies, the static approach assuming constant balance sheet items is not very appropriate. Furthermore, the feedback effect between the financial sector and the real economy might play an important role under certain assumptions, and therefore it should be taken into account by policy makers. This effect can also emerge in the real sector itself as potential instability can be related to households’ distress and have an impact on the aggregate economy via additional decrease in household consumption.