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Sovereign Default Risk and Bank Fragility in Financially Integrated Economies

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  • Patrick Bolton
  • Olivier Jeanne

Abstract

The paper analyzes contagious sovereign debt crises in financially integrated economies. Under financial integration banks optimally diversify their holdings of sovereign debt in an effort to minimize the costs with respect to an individual country's sovereign debt default. Although diversification generates risk diversification benefits ex ante, it also generates contagion ex post. The paper shows that financial integration without fiscal integration results in an inefficient equilibrium supply of government debt. The safest governments inefficiently restrict the amount of high-quality debt that could be used as collateral in the financial system and the riskiest governments issue too much debt, as they do not take account of the costs of contagion. Those inefficiencies can be removed by various forms of fiscal integration, but fiscal integration typically reduces the welfare of the country that provides the “safe-haven” asset below the autarky level.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Palgrave Macmillan in its journal IMF Economic Review.

Volume (Year): 59 (2011)
Issue (Month): 2 (June)
Pages: 162-194

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Handle: RePEc:pal:imfecr:v:59:y:2011:i:2:p:162-194

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References

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  1. Patrick Bolton & Olivier Jeanne, 2009. "Structuring and Restructuring Sovereign Debt: The Role of Seniority -super-1," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 76(3), pages 879-902.
  2. Gennaioli, Nicola & Martin, Alberto & Rossi, Stefano, 2010. "Sovereign Default, Domestic Banks and Financial Institutions," CEPR Discussion Papers 7955, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  3. Alesina, Alberto & Spolaore, Enrico, 1997. "On the Number and Size of Nations," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 112(4), pages 1027-56, November.
  4. Fernando A. Broner & Alberto Martín & Jaume Ventura, 2006. "Sovereign Risk and Secondary Markets," Working Papers 288, Barcelona Graduate School of Economics.
  5. Guido Sandleris, 2010. "Sovereign Defaults, Domestic Credit Market Institutions and Credit to the Private Sector," Business School Working Papers 2010-01, Universidad Torcuato Di Tella.
  6. Patrick Bolton & Olivier Jeanne, 2007. "Structuring and Restructuring Sovereign Debt: The Role of a Bankruptcy Regime," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 115(6), pages 901-924, December.
  7. Fernando A Broner & Jaume Ventura, 2006. "Globalization and Risk Sharing," Working Papers 307, Barcelona Graduate School of Economics.
  8. De Santis, Roberto A. & Gérard, Bruno, 2006. "Financial integration, international portfolio choice and the European Monetary Union," Working Paper Series 0626, European Central Bank.
  9. Carmen M. Reinhart & Kenneth S. Rogoff, 2009. "This Time Is Different: Eight Centuries of Financial Folly," Economics Books, Princeton University Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 8973.
  10. Michael Kumhof & Evan Tanner, 2005. "Government Debt," IMF Working Papers 05/57, International Monetary Fund.
  11. Douglas W. Diamond & Philip H. Dybvig, 2000. "Bank runs, deposit insurance, and liquidity," Quarterly Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis, issue Win, pages 14-23.
  12. Reinhart, Carmen & Rogoff, Kenneth, 2009. "This Time It’s Different: Eight Centuries of Financial Folly-Preface," MPRA Paper 17451, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  13. Ejsing, Jacob & Lemke, Wolfgang, 2009. "The Janus-headed salvation: sovereign and bank credit risk premia during 2008-09," Working Paper Series 1127, European Central Bank.
  14. Bolton, Patrick & Roland, Gerard, 1997. "The Breakup of Nations: A Political Economy Analysis," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 112(4), pages 1057-90, November.
  15. Thomas Philippon, 2010. "Debt Overhang and Recapitalization in Closed and Open Economies," IMF Economic Review, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 58(1), pages 157-178, August.
  16. Bolton, Patrick & Roland, Gerard, 1996. "Distributional Conflicts, Factor Mobility, and Political Integration," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(2), pages 99-104, May.
  17. Edda Zoli & Silvia Sgherri, 2009. "Euro Area Sovereign Risk During the Crisis," IMF Working Papers 09/222, International Monetary Fund.
  18. Patrick Bolton & Olivier Jeanne, 2007. "Structuring and Restructuring Sovereign Debt," IMF Working Papers 07/192, International Monetary Fund.
  19. Reinhart, Carmen & Vegh, Carlos & Velasco, Andres, 2008. "Money, Crises, and Transition Essays in Honor of Guillermo A. Calvo: An Introduction," MPRA Paper 13232, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  20. Maurice Obstfeld & Kenneth S. Rogoff, 1996. "Foundations of International Macroeconomics," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262150476, December.
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