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The timing of sovereign defaults over electoral terms

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  • Nathan Foley-Fisher

Abstract

I construct a database that maps the timing of sovereign default decisions into elected politicians' terms of office, that provides an empirical means of investigating political economy theories of sovereign default. I find no robust patterns in the timing of default decisions over terms of office. I also find no evidence in support of the political reputation theory of sovereign debt repayment. Finally, there is some tentative evidence that elected leaders who default are also those more likely to be re-elected. Motivated by anecdotal evidence, I use a stylised model of political leaders with career concerns to demonstrate how this can occur when politicians care about re-election.

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File URL: http://www.federalreserve.gov/pubs/ifdp/2012/1047/default.htm
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File URL: http://www.federalreserve.gov/pubs/ifdp/2012/1047/ifdp1047.pdf
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.) in its series International Finance Discussion Papers with number 1047.

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Date of creation: 2012
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Handle: RePEc:fip:fedgif:1047

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  1. Gilat Levy, 2005. "Careerist Judges," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 36(2), pages 275-297, Summer.
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Cited by:
  1. Joy, Mark, 2012. "Sovereign default and macroeconomic tipping points," Research Technical Papers 10/RT/12, Central Bank of Ireland.

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