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Contract Enforcement and Argentina’s Long-Run Decline

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  • Leandro Prados de la Escosura

    ()

  • Isabel Sanz Villarroya

    ()

Abstract

Argentina has slipped from being among the ten richest countries in the world by the eve of World War I to its current position close to developing countries. Why did Argentina fall behind? In this paper we employ a structural model to investigate the extent to which contract enforcement, as captured by Clague, Keefer, Knack, and Olson’s “Contract Intensive Money”, conditioned broad capital accumulation and economic growth in Argentina and, consequently, the country’s relative international position. Our results suggest that poor contract enforcement played a major role in Argentina’s unique experience of long-run economic decline.

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Paper provided by Universidad Carlos III, Departamento de Historia Económica e Instituciones in its series Working Papers in Economic History with number wp06-06.

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Date of creation: Sep 2006
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Handle: RePEc:cte:whrepe:wp06-06

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  1. Williamson Jeffrey G., 1995. "The Evolution of Global Labor Markets since 1830: Background Evidence and Hypotheses," Explorations in Economic History, Elsevier, vol. 32(2), pages 141-196, April.
  2. Paolera, Gerardo Della & Taylor, Alan M., 1999. "Economic Recovery from the Argentine Great Depression: Institutions, Expectations, and the Change of Macroeconomic Regime," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 59(03), pages 567-599, September.
  3. Taylor, Alan M & Williamson, Jeffrey G, 1994. "Capital Flows to the New World as an Intergenerational Transfer," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 102(2), pages 348-71, April.
  4. Gregory, Allan W. & Hansen, Bruce E., 1996. "Residual-based tests for cointegration in models with regime shifts," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 70(1), pages 99-126, January.
  5. Jushan Bai & Pierre Perron, 1998. "Estimating and Testing Linear Models with Multiple Structural Changes," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 66(1), pages 47-78, January.
  6. Taylor, Alan M., 1992. "External Dependence, Demographic Burdens, and Argentine Economic Decline After the Belle Époque," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 52(04), pages 907-936, December.
  7. Alesina, Alberto & Perotti, Roberto, 1996. "Income distribution, political instability, and investment," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 40(6), pages 1203-1228, June.
  8. Barro, Robert J, 2000. " Inequality and Growth in a Panel of Countries," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 5(1), pages 5-32, March.
  9. Hansen, Bruce E, 2002. "Tests for Parameter Instability in Regressions with I(1) Processes," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 20(1), pages 45-59, January.
  10. Stephen Knack & Philip Keefer, 1995. "Institutions And Economic Performance: Cross-Country Tests Using Alternative Institutional Measures," Economics and Politics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 7(3), pages 207-227, November.
  11. Finn E. Kydland & Carlos E.J.M. Zarazaga, 2001. "Argentina's lost decade," Center for Latin America Working Papers 0401, Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas.
  12. N. Gregory Mankiw & David Romer & David N. Weil, 1990. "A Contribution to the Empirics of Economic Growth," NBER Working Papers 3541, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  13. Perotti, Roberto & Alesina, Alberto, 1996. "Income Distribution, Political Instability, and Investment," Scholarly Articles 4553018, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  14. Clague, Christopher & Keefer, Philip & Knack, Stephen & Olson, Mancur, 1999. "Contract Intensive Money," MPRA Paper 25717, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  15. Gwartney, James & Lawson, Robert, 2003. "The concept and measurement of economic freedom," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 19(3), pages 405-430, September.
  16. Clague, Christopher, et al, 1999. " Contract-Intensive Money: Contract Enforcement, Property Rights, and Economic Performance," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 4(2), pages 185-211, June.
  17. Finn E. Kydland & Carlos E. J. M. Zarazaga, 2002. "Online Appendix to Argentina's Lost Decade and the Subsequent Recovery Puzzle," Technical Appendices kydland02, Review of Economic Dynamics.
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Cited by:
  1. Campos, Nauro F. & Karanasos, Menelaos G. & Tan, Bin, 2009. "From Riches to Rags, and Back? Explaining the Growth Trajectory of Argentina since the 1890s," Proceedings of the German Development Economics Conference, Frankfurt a.M. 2009 37, Verein für Socialpolitik, Research Committee Development Economics.
  2. Campos, Nauro F & Karanasos, Menelaos & Tan, Bin, 2008. "Two to Tangle: Financial Development, Political Instability and Economic Growth in Argentina (1896-2000)," CEPR Discussion Papers 7004, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  3. Sebastián Fleitas & Andrés Rius & Carolina Román & Henry Willebald, 2013. "Contract enforcement, investment and growth in Uruguay since 1870," Documentos de Trabajo basados en Monografías (students working papers) 13-01, Instituto de Economía - IECON.

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