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The Costs of Financial Crises: Resource Misallocation, Productivity, and Welfare in the 2001 Argentine Crisis

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  • Guido Sandleris
  • Mark L. J. Wright

Abstract

Financial crises in emerging market countries appear to be very costly: both output and a host of partial welfare indicators decline dramatically. The magnitude of these costs is puzzling both from an accounting perspective -- factor usage does not decline as much as output, resulting in large falls in measured productivity -- and from a theoretical perspective. Towards a resolution of this puzzle, we present a framework that allows us to (i) account for changes in a country's measured productivity during a financial crises as the result of changes in the underlying technology of the economy, the efficiency with which resources are allocated across sectors, and the efficiency of the resource allocation within sectors driven both by reallocation amongst existing plants and by entry and exit; and (ii) measure the change in the country's welfare resulting from changes in productivity, government spending, the terms of trade, and a country's international investment position. We apply this framework to the Argentine crisis of 2001 using a unique establishment level data-set and find that more than half of the roughly 10% decline in measured total factor productivity can be accounted for by deterioration in the allocation of resources both across and within sectors. We measure the decline in welfare to be on the order of one-quarter of one years GDP.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Wiley Blackwell in its journal Scandinavian Journal of Economics.

Volume (Year): 116 (2014)
Issue (Month): 1 (01)
Pages: 87-127

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Handle: RePEc:bla:scandj:v:116:y:2014:i:1:p:87-127

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References

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Cited by:
  1. Alberto Martin, 2010. "Economic Growth with Bubbles," 2010 Meeting Papers 788, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  2. Pengfei Wang & Jianjun Miao, 2012. "Sectoral Bubbles and Endogenous Growth," 2012 Meeting Papers 227, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  3. George Alessandria & Sangeeta Pratap & Vivian Yue, 2013. "Export Dynamics in Large Devaluations," Working Papers 062013, Hong Kong Institute for Monetary Research.
  4. Susanto Basu & Luigi Pascali & Fabio Schiantarelli & Luis Serven, 2012. "Productivity and the Welfare of Nations," Boston College Working Papers in Economics 793, Boston College Department of Economics, revised 21 Apr 2012.
  5. Ezra Oberfield, 2012. "Online Appendix to "Productivity and Misallocation During a Crisis: Evidence from the Chilean Crisis of 1982"," Technical Appendices 11-215, Review of Economic Dynamics.
  6. Kyoji Fukao & Tsutomu Miyagawa & Hak K. Pyo & Keun Hee Rhee, 2011. "Estimates of Total Factor Productivity, the Contribution of ICT, and Resource Reallocation Effects in Japan and Korea," Global COE Hi-Stat Discussion Paper Series gd10-177, Institute of Economic Research, Hitotsubashi University.

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