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Credit Ratings and Debt Crises

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  • Bussière, M.
  • Ristiniemi, A.

Abstract

This paper analyses the role of credit rating agencies in sovereign debt crises. Using a panel of 53 emerging and developing countries with annual data going back to 1977, the paper shows that credit ratings are not very good predictors of debt distress events once tested against a simple benchmark model with standard macroeconomic variables. Next, the paper turns to higher frequency data for a subset of countries to analyze the link between credit ratings and bond spreads. The results indicate that bond spreads react strongly to credit ratings, especially to downgrades in the non-investment grade category. The results are robust to a variety of additional tests.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Banque de France in its series Working papers with number 396.

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Length: 45 pages
Date of creation: 2012
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:bfr:banfra:396

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Postal: Banque de France 31 Rue Croix des Petits Champs LABOLOG - 49-1404 75049 PARIS
Web page: http://www.banque-france.fr/
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Related research

Keywords: Credit rating agencies; debt crises; fiscal policy; emerging market economies; developing countries; panel estimation.;

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References

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  1. Carmen M. Reinhart, 2002. "Default, Currency Crises, and Sovereign Credit Ratings," World Bank Economic Review, World Bank Group, vol. 16(2), pages 151-170, August.
  2. Reinhart, Carmen & Goldstein, Morris & Kaminsky, Graciela, 2000. "Assessing financial vulnerability, an early warning system for emerging markets: Introduction," MPRA Paper 13629, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  3. Reisen, Helmut & von Maltzan, Julia, 1999. "Boom and Bust and Sovereign Ratings," International Finance, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 2(2), pages 273-93, July.
  4. Bar-Isaac, Heski & Shapiro, Joel, 2013. "Ratings quality over the business cycle," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 108(1), pages 62-78.
  5. Reinhart, Carmen, 2002. "Sovereign Credit Ratings Before and After Financial Crises," MPRA Paper 7410, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  6. Martín González Rozada & Eduardo Levy Yeyati, 2006. "Global Factors and Emerging Market Spreads," Research Department Publications 4445, Inter-American Development Bank, Research Department.
  7. Eduardo Borensztein & Patricio Valenzuela & Kevin Cowan, 2007. "Sovereign Ceilings "Lite"? T+L3712he Impact of Sovereign Ratingson Corporate Ratings in Emerging Market Economies," IMF Working Papers 07/75, International Monetary Fund.
  8. Chiţu, Livia, 2012. "Was unofficial dollarisation/euroisation an amplifier of the 'Great Recession' of 2007-09 in emerging economies," Working Paper Series 1473, European Central Bank.
  9. António Afonso, 2002. "Understanding the Determinants of Government Debt Ratings: Evidence for the Two Leading Agencies," Working Papers Department of Economics 2002/02, ISEG - School of Economics and Management, Department of Economics, University of Lisbon.
  10. Opp, Christian C. & Opp, Marcus M. & Harris, Milton, 2013. "Rating agencies in the face of regulation," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 108(1), pages 46-61.
  11. Amadou N. R. Sy, 2003. "Rating the Rating Agencies," IMF Working Papers 03/122, International Monetary Fund.
  12. Aitor Erce, 2012. "Selective sovereign defaults," Globalization and Monetary Policy Institute Working Paper 127, Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas.
  13. Mark A. Carlson & Galina B. Hale, 2005. "Courage to Capital? A Model of the Effects of Rating Agencies on Sovereign Debt Role-over," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 1506, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
  14. Marc Flandreau & Norbert Gaillard & Frank Packer, 2010. "To err is human: rating agencies and the interwar foreign government debt crisis," BIS Working Papers 335, Bank for International Settlements.
  15. Alsakka, Rasha & ap Gwilym, Owain, 2010. "Leads and lags in sovereign credit ratings," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 34(11), pages 2614-2626, November.
  16. Guillermo Larraín & Helmut Reisen & Julia von Maltzan, 1997. "Emerging Market Risk and Sovereign Credit Ratings," OECD Development Centre Working Papers 124, OECD Publishing.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Steinar Holden & Gisle James Natvik & Adrien Vigier, 2012. "An equilibrium model of credit rating agencies," Working Paper 2012/23, Norges Bank.
  2. Aitor Erce, 2012. "Does the IMF's official support affect sovereign bonds maturities?," Globalization and Monetary Policy Institute Working Paper 128, Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas.
  3. Aitor Erce, 2012. "Does the IMF´s official support affect sovereign bond maturities?," Banco de Espa�a Working Papers 1231, Banco de Espa�a.

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