Advanced Search
MyIDEAS: Login to save this paper or follow this series

The unexpected global financial crisis : researching its root cause

Contents:

Author Info

  • Lin, Justin Yifu
  • Treichel, Volker

Abstract

The world is currently still struggling with the aftermath of the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression. Following a description of the eruption, evolution and consequences of the global crisis, this paper reviews alternative hypotheses for the causes of the global financial crisis as well as their empirical evidence. The paper refutes the frequently voiced view that the global crisis was caused by global imbalances that reflected economic policies of East Asian countries. Instead, it argues that global imbalances were the result of excess demand in the United States, resulting from both the public debt in the United States arising from the Afghanistan and Iraqi wars and tax cuts and the overconsumption by households supported by the wealth effect from the housing bubble in the United States. The housing bubble itself was the outcome of the Federal Reserve's low interest rate policy in the aftermath of the burst of the"dot-com"bubble in 2001, the lack of appropriate financial regulation, and housing policies aimed at expanding the mortgage market to low-income borrowers. It was possible to maintain the large trade deficits of the United States for such a long period of time because of the dollar's reserve currency status. When the housing bubble in the United States burst, the global crisis ensued. The paper also analyzes why China's trade surplus increased significantly in general and with the United States in particular in recent years, and argues that this increase was caused by both the relocation of the labor-intensive tradable sector of East Asian economies to China and high corporate saving rates in China as a result of its dual-track approach to reform.

Download Info

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
File URL: http://www-wds.worldbank.org/servlet/WDSContentServer/WDSP/IB/2012/01/09/000158349_20120109085942/Rendered/PDF/WPS5937.pdf
Download Restriction: no

Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by The World Bank in its series Policy Research Working Paper Series with number 5937.

as in new window
Length:
Date of creation: 01 Jan 2012
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:wbk:wbrwps:5937

Contact details of provider:
Postal: 1818 H Street, N.W., Washington, DC 20433
Phone: (202) 477-1234
Email:
Web page: http://www.worldbank.org/
More information through EDIRC

Related research

Keywords: Debt Markets; Currencies and Exchange Rates; Emerging Markets; Economic Theory&Research; Access to Finance;

This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

References

References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
as in new window
  1. Case, Karl E. & Quigley, John M. & Shiller, Robert J., 2001. "Comparing Wealth Effects: The Stock Market versus The Housing Market," Department of Economics, Working Paper Series qt44k6g6vx, Department of Economics, Institute for Business and Economic Research, UC Berkeley.
  2. Laibson, David I. & Mollerstrom, Johanna Britta, 2010. "Capital Flows, Consumption Booms and Asset Bubbles: A Behavioural Alternative to the Savings Glut Hypothesis," Scholarly Articles 4686766, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  3. Carmen M. Reinhart & Kenneth S. Rogoff, 2009. "This Time Is Different: Eight Centuries of Financial Folly," Economics Books, Princeton University Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 8973.
  4. Nicholas R. Lardy, 2005. "Exchange Rate and Monetary Policy in China," Cato Journal, Cato Journal, Cato Institute, vol. 25(1), pages 41-47, Winter.
  5. Jarociński, Marek & Smets, Frank, 2008. "House Prices and the stance of Monetary Policy," Working Paper Series 0891, European Central Bank.
  6. Michael Funke & Jörg Rahn, 2005. "Just how Undervalued is the Chinese Renminbi," Quantitative Macroeconomics Working Papers 20504, Hamburg University, Department of Economics.
  7. Giovanni Ferri & Li-Gang Liu, 2009. "Honor Thy Creditors Beforan Thy Shareholders: Are the Profits of Chinese State-Owned Enterprises Real?," Working Papers 162009, Hong Kong Institute for Monetary Research.
  8. Di Matteo, Massimo, 1990. "The American business cycle. Continuity and change : Edited by Robert J. Gordon. NBER studies in business cycles. Volume 25. (Chicago and London: The University of Chicago press, 1986. Pp. xiv + 868. ," Structural Change and Economic Dynamics, Elsevier, vol. 1(2), pages 399-399, December.
  9. Bostic, Raphael & Gabriel, Stuart & Painter, Gary, 2009. "Housing wealth, financial wealth, and consumption: New evidence from micro data," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 39(1), pages 79-89, January.
  10. Aaron Brown, 2011. "Exorbitant Privilege: The Rise and Fall of the Dollar and the Future of the International Monetary System, by Barry Eichengreen," Quantitative Finance, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 11(6), pages 825-826.
  11. Miranda Xafa, 2007. "Global Imbalances: Do They Matter?," Cato Journal, Cato Journal, Cato Institute, vol. 27(1), pages 59-68, Winter.
  12. James Bullard, 2010. "Three lessons for monetary policy from the panic of 2008," Review, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, issue May, pages 155-163.
  13. Marcus H. Miller & Paul Weller & Lei Zhang, 2002. "Moral Hazard and the US Stockmarket: Analyzing the "Greenspan Put"," Working Paper Series WP02-1, Peterson Institute for International Economics.
  14. Niall Ferguson & Moritz Schularick, 2011. "The End of Chimerica," International Finance, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 14(1), pages 1-26, 04.
  15. Ben-Bassat, Avraham & Gottlieb, Daniel, 1992. "Optimal international reserves and sovereign risk," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 33(3-4), pages 345-362, November.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

Citations

Lists

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

Statistics

Access and download statistics

Corrections

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:wbk:wbrwps:5937. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Roula I. Yazigi).

If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.