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Precautionary Demand for Foreign Assets in Sudden Stop Economies: An Assessment of the New Mercantilism

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  • Marco E. Terrones

    (International Monetary Fund)

  • Enrique G. Mendoza

    (University of Maryland & NBER)

  • Ceyhun Bora Durdu

    (Federal Reserve Board)

Abstract

Financial globalization had a rocky start in emerging economies hit by Sudden Stops. Foreign reserves have grown very rapidly since then, as if those countries were practicing a New Mercantilism that views foreign reserves as a war-chest for defense against Sudden Stops. This paper conducts a quantitative assessment of this argument using a stochastic intertemporal equilibrium framework in which precautionary foreign asset demand is driven by output variability, financial globalization, and Sudden Stop risk. In this framework, credit constraints produce endogenous Sudden Stops. We find that financial globalization and Sudden Stop risk can explain the surge in reserves but output variability cannot. These results hold using the intertemporal preferences of the Bewley-Aiyagari-Hugget precautionary savings model or the Uzawa-Epstein setup with endogenous impatience.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Society for Economic Dynamics in its series 2008 Meeting Papers with number 56.

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Date of creation: 2008
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Handle: RePEc:red:sed008:56

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  1. S. Rao Aiyagari, 1993. "Uninsured idiosyncratic risk and aggregate saving," Working Papers 502, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  2. Enrique G. Mendoza & Ceyhun Bora Durdu & Marco Terrones, 2007. "Precautionary Demand for Foreign Assets in Sudden Stop Economies: An Assessment of the New Merchantilism," IMF Working Papers 07/146, International Monetary Fund.
  3. Enrique G. Mendoza, 2001. "Credit, Prices, and Crashes: Business Cycles with a Sudden Stop," NBER Working Papers 8338, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Ceyhun Bora Durdu, 2007. "Quantitative implications of indexed bonds in small open economies," International Finance Discussion Papers 909, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
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  8. Frankel, Jeffrey & Cavallo, Eduardo, 2004. "Does Openness to Trade Make Countries More Vulnerable to Sudden Stops, or Less? Using Gravity to Establish Causality," Working Paper Series rwp04-038, Harvard University, John F. Kennedy School of Government.
  9. Caballero, Ricardo J. & Panageas, Stavros, 2008. "Hedging sudden stops and precautionary contractions," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 85(1-2), pages 28-57, February.
  10. Enrique G. Mendoza, 2005. "Real Exchange Rate Volatility and the Price of Nontradables in Sudden-Stop-Prone Economies," NBER Working Papers 11691, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. Marco Terrones & Eswar Prasad & M. Ayhan Kose, 2003. "Financial Integration and Macroeconomic Volatility," IMF Working Papers 03/50, International Monetary Fund.
  12. Joshua Aizenman & Jaewoo Lee, 2007. "International Reserves: Precautionary Versus Mercantilist Views, Theory and Evidence," Open Economies Review, Springer, vol. 18(2), pages 191-214, April.
  13. Enrique G. Mendoza & Vincenzo Quadrini & Jose-Victor Rios-Rull, 2007. "Financial Integration, Financial Deepness and Global Imbalances," NBER Working Papers 12909, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  17. Epstein, Larry G., 1983. "Stationary cardinal utility and optimal growth under uncertainty," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 31(1), pages 133-152, October.
  18. Romain Ranciere & Olivier Jeanne, 2006. "The Optimal Level of International Reserves for Emerging Market Countries: Formulas and Applications," IMF Working Papers 06/229, International Monetary Fund.
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  20. Miles S. Kimball, 1989. "Precautionary Saving in the Small and in the Large," NBER Working Papers 2848, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  21. Guillermo A. Calvo & Alejandro Izquierdo & Luis-Fernando Mejia, 2004. "On the Empirics of Sudden Stops: The Relevance of Balance-Sheet Effects," NBER Working Papers 10520, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  22. Martín Uribe, 2006. "Individual Versus Aggregate Collateral Constraints and the Overborrowing Syndrome," NBER Working Papers 12260, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  23. Martin Uribe & Vivian Yue, 2004. "Country spreads and emerging countries: who drives whom?," Proceedings, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, issue Jun.
  24. Enrique G. Mendoza, 2006. "Lessons from the Debt-Deflation Theory of Sudden Stops," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 96(2), pages 411-416, May.
  25. Guillermo A. Calvo, 1998. "Capital Flows and Capital-Market Crises: The Simple Economics of Sudden Stops," Journal of Applied Economics, Universidad del CEMA, vol. 0, pages 35-54, November.
  26. C. Bora Durdu & Enrique G. Mendoza & Marco Terrones, 2007. "Precautionary Demand for Foreign Assets in Sudden Stop Economies: An Assessment of the New Mercantilism: Working Paper 2007-10," Working Papers 18952, Congressional Budget Office.
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