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The Vulnerability of Sub-Saharan Africa to Financial Crises: The Case of Trade

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  • Nicolas Berman
  • Philippe Martin

Abstract

Motivated by the 2008–09 financial crisis and the trade collapse, the paper analyzes the effect of past banking crises (1976–2002) on trade with a focus on African exporters. The paper shows that they are particularly vulnerable to a banking crisis in the countries they export to. It also distinguishes between an income effect (during a banking crisis, income and exports to the country fall) and a disruption effect (a banking crisis disrupts the financing of trade channels). For the average country, the disruption effect is moderate (a deviation from the gravity predicted trade of between 1 and 5 percent). The paper finds however that the disruption effect is much larger and long-lasting for African exporters as the fall in trade (relative to gravity) is 10 to 15 percentage points higher than for other countries in the aftermath of a banking crisis. This vulnerability of African exports in the short run does not come from a composition effect, that is, from the fact that primary exports are disrupted more severely than manufacturing exports. Instead, the paper provides suggestive evidence that the dependence of African countries upon trade finance is an important determinant of their vulnerability to banking crises in partner countries.

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Bibliographic Info

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

Volume (Year): 60 (2012)
Issue (Month): 3 (September)
Pages: 329-364

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Handle: RePEc:pal:imfecr:v:60:y:2012:i:3:p:329-364

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References

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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Jinjarak, Yothin, 2013. "Supply Chains and Credit-Market Shocks: Some Implications for Emerging Markets," ADBI Working Papers 443, Asian Development Bank Institute.
  2. Mthuli Ncube & Zuzana Brixiova & Meng Qingwei, 2014. "Working Paper 198 - Can Intra-Regional Trade Act as a Global Shock Absorber in Africa?," Working Paper Series 2104, African Development Bank.
  3. Nicolas Berman & Jos� de Sousa & Philippe Martin & Thierry Mayer, 2013. "Time to Ship during Financial Crises," NBER International Seminar on Macroeconomics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 9(1), pages 225 - 260.
  4. Mthuli Ncube & Zuzana Brixiova & Qingwei Meng, 2014. "Can Intra-Regional Trade Act as a Global Shock Absorber in Africa?," William Davidson Institute Working Papers Series wp1073, William Davidson Institute at the University of Michigan.
  5. Giscard Assoumou Ella, 2013. "Impact of international income, prices and monetary shocks on real exchange rate in eight African economies: An empirical study," The Empirical Econometrics and Quantitative Economics Letters, Faculty of Economics, Chiang Mai University, vol. 2(3), pages 41 - 54, September.
  6. Independent Evaluation Group, 2013. "Evaluation of the International Finance Corporation's Global Trade Finance Program, 2006-12," World Bank Publications, The World Bank, number 15769, August.
  7. Youssouf Kiendrebeogo, 2013. "How Do Banking Crises Affect Bilateral Exports?," IMF Working Papers 13/150, International Monetary Fund.
  8. Addison, Tony & Singhal, Saurabh & Tarp, Finn, 2013. "Aid to Africa: The changing context," Working Paper Series UNU-WIDER Research Paper , World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
  9. Nakhoda, Aadil, 2012. "The influence of industry financial composition on export flow: A case study of a developing financial market," MPRA Paper 43792, University Library of Munich, Germany.

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