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The cost of defaults: the impact of haircuts on economic growth

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  • Silvia Marchesi
  • Valeria Prato

Abstract

This paper studies the impact of debt default on economic growth taking into account the depth of a debt restructuring. More specifically, creditors' losses (or haircuts) are used as proxies of the severity of the default episodes. Analyzing 89 defaults in 72 countries over the period 1979-2005, consistently with previous results in this literature, we find that defaults have a negative and significant impact on short-term output growth. Moreover, controlling for the severity of the default through the haircut's size, we find that the severity of the default is indeed correlated with a further contraction in output one year after the default and with a positive increase in output three years after the default. Therefore, the use of a variable which is taken as a proxy of the severity of the default episode allows us to detect a more lasting (and eventually positive) effect of debt default on growth.

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File URL: http://dipeco.economia.unimib.it/repec/pdf/mibwpaper265.pdf
File Function: First version, 2013
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by University of Milano-Bicocca, Department of Economics in its series Working Papers with number 265.

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Length: 19
Date of creation: Dec 2013
Date of revision: Dec 2013
Handle: RePEc:mib:wpaper:265

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Keywords: Haircuts; Output losses; Sovereign defaults;

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  1. Eduardo Borensztein & Ugo Panizza, 2009. "The Costs of Sovereign Default," IMF Staff Papers, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 56(4), pages 683-741, November.
  2. Bulow, Jeremy & Rogoff, Kenneth, 1989. "Sovereign Debt: Is to Forgive to Forget?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 79(1), pages 43-50, March.
  3. Cruces, Juan J. & Trebesch, Christoph, 2013. "Sovereign defaults: The price of haircuts," Munich Reprints in Economics 20036, University of Munich, Department of Economics.
  4. Eduardo Borensztein & Ugo Panizza, 2010. "Do Sovereign Defaults Hurt Exporters?," Open Economies Review, Springer, vol. 21(3), pages 393-412, July.
  5. Furceri, Davide & Zdzienicka, Aleksandra, 2012. "How costly are debt crises?," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 31(4), pages 726-742.
  6. Barro, Robert J. & Lee, Jong Wha, 2013. "A new data set of educational attainment in the world, 1950–2010," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 104(C), pages 184-198.
  7. Rose, Andrew K., 2005. "One reason countries pay their debts: renegotiation and international trade," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 77(1), pages 189-206, June.
  8. Eaton, Jonathan & Gersovitz, Mark, 1981. "Debt with Potential Repudiation: Theoretical and Empirical Analysis," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 48(2), pages 289-309, April.
  9. Cole, Harold L & Dow, James & English, William B, 1995. "Default, Settlement, and Signalling: Lending Resumption in a Reputational Model of Sovereign Debt," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 36(2), pages 365-85, May.
  10. Yeyati, Eduardo Levy & Panizza, Ugo, 2011. "The elusive costs of sovereign defaults," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 94(1), pages 95-105, January.
  11. Ugo Panizza & Federico Sturzenegger & Jeromin Zettelmeyer, 2009. "The Economics and Law of Sovereign Debt and Default," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 47(3), pages 651-98, September.
  12. Sturzenegger, Federico & Zettelmeyer, Jeromin, 2008. "Haircuts: Estimating investor losses in sovereign debt restructurings, 1998-2005," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 27(5), pages 780-805, September.
  13. Michael Tomz & Mark L. J. Wright, 2007. "Do countries default in “bad times”?," Working Paper Series 2007-17, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.
  14. Gelos, R. Gaston & Sahay, Ratna & Sandleris, Guido, 2011. "Sovereign borrowing by developing countries: What determines market access?," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 83(2), pages 243-254, March.
  15. Ozler, Sule, 1993. "Have Commercial Banks Ignored History?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 83(3), pages 608-20, June.
  16. David Benjamin, 2008. "Recovery Before Redemption," 2008 Meeting Papers 531, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  17. English, William B, 1996. "Understanding the Costs of Sovereign Default: American State Debts in the 1840's," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(1), pages 259-75, March.
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