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World Real Interest Rates: A Global Savings and Investment Perspective

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  • Brigitte Desroches
  • Michael Francis

Abstract

Over the past 15 years, long-term interest rates have declined to levels not seen since the 1970s. This paper explores possible shifts in global savings and investment that have led to this fall in the world real interest rate. There are several key findings. First, the authors identify the relative weakness in investment demand as more important than the relative increase in desired global savings to explain the decline in global interest rates. Second, the results indicate that the key factors explaining movements in savings and investment are variables that evolve relatively slowly over time, such as labour force growth and age structure. The conclusions suggest that over the coming years, world real interest rates are likely to continue to adjust slowly, reflecting longterm trends.

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File URL: http://www.bankofcanada.ca/wp-content/uploads/2010/03/wp07-16.pdf
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Bank of Canada in its series Working Papers with number 07-16.

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Length: 29 pages
Date of creation: 2007
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:bca:bocawp:07-16

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Keywords: Interest rates; International topics;

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References

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  1. Robert J. Barro & Xavier Sala-i-Martin, 1990. "World Real Interest Rates," NBER Chapters, in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 1990, Volume 5, pages 15-74 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Olivier Jeanne & Michael D. Bordo, 2002. "Monetary Policy and Asset Prices: Does "Benign Neglect" Make Sense?," IMF Working Papers 02/225, International Monetary Fund.
  3. Garcia, Rene & Perron, Pierre, 1996. "An Analysis of the Real Interest Rate under Regime Shifts," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 78(1), pages 111-25, February.
  4. Frederic S. Mishkin, 1981. "The Real Interest Rate: An Empirical Investigation," NBER Working Papers 0622, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Brigitte Desroches & Michael Francis, 2006. "Global Savings, Investment, and World Real Interest Rates," Bank of Canada Review, Bank of Canada, vol. 2006(Winter), pages 3-17.
  6. James Poterba, 2004. "The Impact of Population Aging on Financial Markets," NBER Working Papers 10851, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Gilchrist, Simon & Leahy, John V., 2002. "Monetary policy and asset prices," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 49(1), pages 75-97, January.
  8. Breedon, Francis & Henry, Brian & Williams, Geoffrey, 1999. "Long-Term Real Interest Rates: Evidence on the Global Capital Market," Oxford Review of Economic Policy, Oxford University Press, vol. 15(2), pages 128-42, Summer.
  9. Rudiger Ahrend & Pietro Catte & Robert W.R. Price, 2006. "Factors Behind Low Long-Term Interest Rates," OECD Economics Department Working Papers 490, OECD Publishing.
  10. Joseph E. Gagnon & Mark D. Unferth, 1993. "Is there a world real interest rate?," International Finance Discussion Papers 454, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  11. Sebastian Edwards, 1995. "Why are Saving Rates so Different Across Countries?: An International Comparative Analysis," NBER Working Papers 5097, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  12. Jappelli, Tullio & Pagano, Marco, 1992. "Saving, Growth and Liquidity Constraints," CEPR Discussion Papers 662, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  13. Bruce Little & Robert Lafrance, 2006. "Global Imbalances-Just How Dangerous?," Bank of Canada Review, Bank of Canada, vol. 2006(Spring), pages 3-13.
  14. Milton Friedman, 1957. "A Theory of the Consumption Function," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number frie57-1, October.
  15. Rose, Andrew Kenan, 1988. " Is the Real Interest Rate Stable?," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 43(5), pages 1095-1112, December.
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Cited by:
  1. Alan Greenspan, 2010. "La crisis," Revista de Economía Institucional, Universidad Externado de Colombia - Facultad de Economía, vol. 12(22), pages 15-60, January-J.
  2. Boysen-Hogrefe, Jens & Gern, Klaus-Jürgen & Jannsen, Nils, 2009. "Will global imbalances decrease or even increase?," Open Access Publications from Kiel Institute for the World Economy 32967, Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW).
  3. Boysen-Hogrefe, Jens & Gern, Klaus-Jürgen & Jannsen, Nils, 2009. "Global imbalances after the financial crisis," Kiel Policy Brief 7, Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW).
  4. Tomura, Hajime, 2013. "Heterogeneous beliefs and housing-market boom-bust cycles," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 37(4), pages 735-755.

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