Growth and competitiveness as factors of Eurozone external imbalances : evidence and policy implications
AbstractThe paper assesses the contribution of key factors associated with external imbalances in the Eurozone through the estimation of a panel-data vector autoregressive model over 1975-2011. Growth fluctuations, initially associated with demand booms triggered by unusually low interest rates and later with demand contractions resulting from the crisis and policy adjustments, have been key drivers of current account fluctuations. Changes in competitiveness, measured by real exchange rates or unit labor costs, have played a less important role. Demand shocks have contributed more to current account balance dynamics in the Eurozone periphery than in the core, whereas competitiveness has been a less prominent factor in the periphery but relatively more important in the core. Changes in competitiveness are positively associated with changes in growth. Preventing imbalances from building up in a context of growing financial integration and easy finance warrants enhanced mutual surveillance of fiscal imbalances, but also better regulation of credit markets to prevent excess leverage and concentration of lending in investments prone to speculative bubbles. Coordination of fiscal policy across the Eurozone would facilitate the management of external imbalances without placing an often unwarranted burden on fiscal tightening in countries with sound fiscal positions affected by credit booms. The policies of internal devaluation implemented in the periphery, aimed at promoting external competitiveness, may have had only limited effectiveness in restoring the external balance to equilibrium.
Download InfoIf 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.
Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by The World Bank in its series Policy Research Working Paper Series with number 6732.
Date of creation: 01 Dec 2013
Date of revision:
Currencies and Exchange Rates; Economic Theory&Research; Debt Markets; Emerging Markets; Macroeconomic Management;
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2014-01-10 (All new papers)
- NEP-CSE-2014-01-10 (Economics of Strategic Management)
- NEP-EEC-2014-01-10 (European Economics)
- NEP-MAC-2014-01-10 (Macroeconomics)
- NEP-OPM-2014-01-10 (Open Economy Macroeconomics)
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.:
- R Blundell & Steven Bond, .
"Initial conditions and moment restrictions in dynamic panel data model,"
W14&104., Economics Group, Nuffield College, University of Oxford.
- Blundell, Richard & Bond, Stephen, 1998. "Initial conditions and moment restrictions in dynamic panel data models," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 87(1), pages 115-143, August.
- Richard Blundell & Steve Bond, 1995. "Initial conditions and moment restrictions in dynamic panel data models," IFS Working Papers W95/17, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
- Blundell, R. & Bond, S., 1995. "Initial Conditions and Moment Restrictions in Dynamic Panel Data Models," Economics Papers 104, Economics Group, Nuffield College, University of Oxford.
- Ansgar Belke & Christian Dreger, 2011.
"Current Account Imbalances in the Euro Area: Catching up or Competitiveness?,"
Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin
1106, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research.
- Ansgar Belke & Christian Dreger, 2011. "Current Account Imbalances in the Euro Area: Catching up or Competitiveness?," Ruhr Economic Papers 0241, Rheinisch-Westfälisches Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung, Ruhr-Universität Bochum, Universität Dortmund, Universität Duisburg-Essen.
- Belke, Ansgar & Dreger, Christian, 2011. "Current account imbalances in the euro area: Catching up or competitiveness?," Annual Conference 2011 (Frankfurt, Main): The Order of the World Economy - Lessons from the Crisis 48711, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
- Belke, Ansgar & Dreger, Christian, 2011. "Current account imbalances in the euro area: Catching up or competitiveness?," Discussion Papers 297, European University Viadrina Frankfurt (Oder), Department of Business Administration and Economics.
- Arellano, Manuel & Bover, Olympia, 1995.
"Another look at the instrumental variable estimation of error-components models,"
Journal of Econometrics,
Elsevier, vol. 68(1), pages 29-51, July.
- M Arellano & O Bover, 1990. "Another Look at the Instrumental Variable Estimation of Error-Components Models," CEP Discussion Papers dp0007, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
- Calderon, Cesar & Chong, Alberto & Loayza, Norman, 2000.
"Determinants of current account deficits in developing countries,"
Policy Research Working Paper Series
2398, The World Bank.
- Calderon Cesar Augusto & Chong Alberto & Loayza Norman V., 2002. "Determinants of Current Account Deficits in Developing Countries," The B.E. Journal of Macroeconomics, De Gruyter, vol. 2(1), pages 1-33, March.
- César Calderón & Alberto Chong & Norman Loayza, 1999. "Determinants of Current Account Deficits in Developing Countries," Working Papers Central Bank of Chile 51, Central Bank of Chile.
- Lane, Philip R. & Pels, Barbara, 2012.
"Current Account Imbalances in Europe,"
CEPR Discussion Papers
8958, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
- Philip R. Lane & Barbara Pels, 2012. "Current Account Imbalances in Europe," The Institute for International Integration Studies Discussion Paper Series iiisdp397, IIIS.
- Arghyrou, Michael G & Chortareas, Georgios, 2006.
"Current Account Imbalances and Real Exchange Rates in the Euro Area,"
Cardiff Economics Working Papers
E2006/23, Cardiff University, Cardiff Business School, Economics Section.
- Michael G. Arghyrou & Georgios Chortareas, 2008. "Current Account Imbalances and Real Exchange Rates in the Euro Area," Review of International Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 16(4), pages 747-764, 09.
- Schmitz, Birgit & von Hagen, Jürgen, 2011. "Current account imbalances and financial integration in the euro area," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 30(8), pages 1676-1695.
- Eichenbaum, Martin & Evans, Charles L, 1995. "Some Empirical Evidence on the Effects of Shocks to Monetary Policy on Exchange Rates," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 110(4), pages 975-1009, November.
- Lutz Kilian, 1998. "Small-Sample Confidence Intervals For Impulse Response Functions," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 80(2), pages 218-230, May.
- Arellano, Manuel & Bond, Stephen, 1991.
"Some Tests of Specification for Panel Data: Monte Carlo Evidence and an Application to Employment Equations,"
Review of Economic Studies,
Wiley Blackwell, vol. 58(2), pages 277-97, April.
- Tom Doan, . "RATS program to replicate Arellano-Bond 1991 dynamic panel," Statistical Software Components RTZ00169, Boston College Department of Economics.
- Ruo Chen & Gian-Maria Milesi-Ferretti & Thierry Tressel, 2012. "External Imbalances in the Euro Area," IMF Working Papers 12/236, International Monetary Fund.
- Florence Jaumotte & Piyaporn Sodsriwiboon, 2010. "Current Account Imbalances in the Southern Euro Area," IMF Working Papers 10/139, International Monetary Fund.
- Philip R. Lane, 2008. "The Macroeconomics of Financial Integration: A European Perspective," The Institute for International Integration Studies Discussion Paper Series iiisdp265, IIIS.
- Zemanek, Holger & Belke, Ansgar & Schnabl, Gunther, 2009.
"Current Account Imbalances and Structural Adjustment in the Euro Area: How to Rebalance Competitiveness,"
IZA Policy Papers
7, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
- Holger Zemanek & Ansgar Belke & Gunther Schnabl, 2009. "Current Account Imbalances and Structural Adjustment in the Euro Area: How to Rebalance Competitiveness," Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin 895, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research.
- Holger Zemanek & Ansgar Belke & Gunther Schnabl, 2009. "Current Account Imbalances and Structural Adjustment in the Euro Area: How to Rebalance Competitiveness," CESifo Working Paper Series 2639, CESifo Group Munich.
- Sebastian Barnes & Jeremy Lawson & Artur Radziwill, 2010. "Current Account Imbalances in the Euro Area: A Comparative Perspective," OECD Economics Department Working Papers 826, OECD Publishing.
- Love, Inessa & Zicchino, Lea, 2006. "Financial development and dynamic investment behavior: Evidence from panel VAR," The Quarterly Review of Economics and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 46(2), pages 190-210, May.
- Judson, Ruth A. & Owen, Ann L., 1999. "Estimating dynamic panel data models: a guide for macroeconomists," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 65(1), pages 9-15, October.
- Gros, Daniel, 2012. "Macroeconomic Imbalances in the Euro Area: Symptom or cause of the crisis?," CEPS Papers 6865, Centre for European Policy Studies.
- Ronald MacDonald & Jun Nagayasu, 2000. "The Long-Run Relationship Between Real Exchange Rates and Real Interest Rate Differentials: A Panel Study," IMF Staff Papers, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 47(1), pages 5.
- Menzie D. Chinn & Eswar S. Prasad, 2000.
"Medium-Term Determinants of Current Accounts in Industrial and Developing Countries: An Empirical Exploration,"
NBER Working Papers
7581, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Chinn, Menzie D. & Prasad, Eswar S., 2003. "Medium-term determinants of current accounts in industrial and developing countries: an empirical exploration," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 59(1), pages 47-76, January.
- Olivier Blanchard & Francesco Giavazzi, 2002. "Current Account Deficits in the Euro Area: The End of the Feldstein Horioka Puzzle?," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 33(2), pages 147-210.
- Nickell, Stephen J, 1981. "Biases in Dynamic Models with Fixed Effects," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 49(6), pages 1417-26, November.
- Roel Beetsma & Massimo Giuliodori & Franc Klaassen, 2008. "The Effects of Public Spending Shocks on Trade Balances and Budget Deficits in the European Union," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 6(2-3), pages 414-423, 04-05.
- Giavazzi, Francesco & Spaventa, Luigi, 2010. "Why the current account may matter in a monetary union: Lessons from the financial crisis in the Euro area," CEPR Discussion Papers 8008, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Roula I. Yazigi).
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.