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Demographic Trends, Fiscal Policy and Trade Deficits

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  • Andrea Ferrero

    ()
    (Economics New York University)

Abstract

In this paper, I argue that demographic factors play a central role in accounting for the trade deficit experienced by the U.S. during the last three decades. The main idea is that cross-country demographic differentials lead to adjustments in savings and investments which are associated with international capital flows towards relatively young and rapidly growing economies. I develop a tractable two-country framework with life-cycle structure that formalizes this intuition. The model permits to illustrate analytically and quantitatively the contribution of demographic variables in determining the equilibrium trade balance. I show that persistent differences in population aging can explain a significant fraction of the negative trend in the U.S. trade balance. Notably, the explicit consideration of the demographic transition also helps to reconcile the dynamics of the trade balance with the evolution of the U.S. fiscal deficits and generates a declining pattern for the real interest rate broadly consistent with the data

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File URL: http://repec.org/sed2006/up.31420.1139942793.pdf
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Society for Economic Dynamics in its series 2006 Meeting Papers with number 444.

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Date of creation: 03 Dec 2006
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Handle: RePEc:red:sed006:444

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Keywords: External Imbalances; Aging; Fiscal Deficits;

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  1. Maurice Obstfeld & Kenneth S. Rogoff, 1996. "Foundations of International Macroeconomics," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262150476, December.
  2. Hurd, Michael D, 1989. "Mortality Risk and Bequests," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 57(4), pages 779-813, July.
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Cited by:
  1. Douglas Laxton & Michael Kumhof, 2007. "A Party without a Hangover? On the Effects of U.S. Government Deficits," 2007 Meeting Papers 676, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  2. Brahima Coulibaly & Jonathan Millar, 2008. "The Asian financial crisis, uphill flow of capital, and global imbalances: evidence from a micro study," International Finance Discussion Papers 942, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  3. Ripatti, Antti, 2008. "'A dynamic new Keynesian life-cycle model: Societal aging, demographics, and monetary policy' by Ippei Fujiwara and Yuki Teranishi. A comment," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 32(8), pages 2507-2511, August.
  4. David Backus & Espen Henriksen & Frederic Lambert & Christopher Telmer, 2009. "Current Account Fact and Fiction," NBER Working Papers 15525, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.

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