IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/aea/aejmac/v6y2014i2p1-28.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

Resolving Debt Overhang: Political Constraints in the Aftermath of Financial Crises

Author

Listed:
  • Atif Mian
  • Amir Sufi
  • Francesco Trebbi

Abstract

Countries become more politically polarized and fractionalized following financial crises, reducing the likelihood of major financial reforms precisely when they might have especially large benefits. The evidence from a large sample of countries provides strong support for the hypotheses that following a financial crisis, voters become more ideologically extreme and ruling coalitions become weaker, independently of whether they were initially in power. The evidence that increased polarization and weaker governments reduce the chances of financial reform and that financial crises lead to legislative gridlock and anemic reform is less clear-cut. The US debt overhang resolution is discussed as an illustration.

Suggested Citation

  • Atif Mian & Amir Sufi & Francesco Trebbi, 2014. "Resolving Debt Overhang: Political Constraints in the Aftermath of Financial Crises," American Economic Journal: Macroeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 6(2), pages 1-28, April.
  • Handle: RePEc:aea:aejmac:v:6:y:2014:i:2:p:1-28
    Note: DOI: 10.1257/mac.6.2.1
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.aeaweb.org/articles.php?doi=10.1257/mac.6.2.1
    Download Restriction: no

    File URL: http://www.aeaweb.org/aej/mac/app/0602/2012-0022_app.pdf
    Download Restriction: no

    File URL: http://www.aeaweb.org/aej/mac/data/0602/2012-0022_data.zip
    Download Restriction: no

    File URL: http://www.aeaweb.org/aej/mac/ds/0602/2012-0022_ds.zip
    Download Restriction: Access to full text is restricted to AEA members and institutional subscribers.

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Atif Mian & Amir Sufi & Francesco Trebbi, 2010. "The Political Economy of the US Mortgage Default Crisis," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 100(5), pages 1967-1998, December.
    2. Carmen M. Reinhart & Kenneth S. Rogoff, 2009. "The Aftermath of Financial Crises," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 99(2), pages 466-472, May.
    3. Carmen M. Reinhart & Vincent Reinhart, 2010. "After the fall," Proceedings - Economic Policy Symposium - Jackson Hole, Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City, pages 17-60.
    4. Alberto Alesina & Dorian Carloni & Giampaolo Lecce, 2012. "The Electoral Consequences of Large Fiscal Adjustments," NBER Chapters,in: Fiscal Policy after the Financial Crisis, pages 531-570 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    5. Shleifer, Andrei & Vishny, Robert W, 1992. " Liquidation Values and Debt Capacity: A Market Equilibrium Approach," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 47(4), pages 1343-1366, September.
    6. Veronica Guerrieri & Guido Lorenzoni, 2017. "Credit Crises, Precautionary Savings, and the Liquidity Trap," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 132(3), pages 1427-1467.
    7. Martha L. Olney, 1999. "Avoiding Default: The Role of Credit in the Consumption Collapse of 1930," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 114(1), pages 319-335.
    8. Carmen M. Reinhart & Kenneth S. Rogoff, 2011. "From Financial Crash to Debt Crisis," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 101(5), pages 1676-1706, August.
    9. Òscar Jordà & Moritz Schularick & Alan M. Taylor, 2011. "When credit bites back: leverage, business cycles, and crises," Working Paper Series 2011-27, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.
    10. Adi Brender & Allan Drazen, 2008. "How Do Budget Deficits and Economic Growth Affect Reelection Prospects? Evidence from a Large Panel of Countries," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 98(5), pages 2203-2220, December.
    11. Stephen Nunez, 2004. "Bankruptcy "Reform" in Congress: Creditors, Committees, Ideology, and Floor Voting in the Legislative Process," Journal of Law, Economics, and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 20(2), pages 527-557, October.
    12. Midrigan, Virgiliu & Philippon, Thomas, 2011. "Household Leverage and the Recession," CEPR Discussion Papers 8381, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    13. Djankov, Simeon & McLiesh, Caralee & Shleifer, Andrei, 2007. "Private credit in 129 countries," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 84(2), pages 299-329, May.
    14. Patrick Bolton & Howard Rosenthal, 2002. "Political Intervention in Debt Contracts," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 110(5), pages 1103-1134, October.
    15. Alesina, Alberto & Drazen, Allan, 1991. "Why Are Stabilizations Delayed?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 81(5), pages 1170-1188, December.
    16. Alston, Lee J, 1984. "Farm Foreclosure Moratorium Legislation: A Lesson from the Past," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 74(3), pages 445-457, June.
    17. Alberto Alesina & Silvia Ardagna & Francesco Trebbi, 2006. "Who Adjusts and When?The Political Economy of Reforms," IMF Staff Papers, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 53(si), pages 1-1.
    18. Alberto Alesina & Silvia Ardagna & Francesco Trebbi, 2006. "Who Adjusts and When? On the Political Economy of Reforms," NBER Working Papers 12049, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. David Autor & David Dorn & Gordon Hanson & Kaveh Majlesi, 2016. "Importing Political Polarization? The Electoral Consequences of Rising Trade Exposure," NBER Working Papers 22637, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Alberton Montagnoli & Mirko Moro & Georgios A Panos & Robert E Wright, 2016. "Financial literacy and political orientation in Great Britain," Working Papers 1614, University of Strathclyde Business School, Department of Economics.
    3. Gunes Gokmen & Massimiliano Gaetano Onorato & Tommaso Nannicini & Chris Papageorgiou, 2017. "Policies in Hard Times: Assessing the Impact of Financial Crises on Structural Reforms," Working Papers 605, IGIER (Innocenzo Gasparini Institute for Economic Research), Bocconi University.
    4. Prato, Carlo & Wolton, Stephane, 2013. "Rational Ignorance, Elections, and Reform," MPRA Paper 68638, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised 10 Dec 2015.
    5. Funke, Manuel & Schularick, Moritz & Trebesch, Christoph, 2016. "Going to extremes: Politics after financial crises, 1870–2014," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 88(C), pages 227-260.
    6. Abuka, Charles & Alinda, Ronnie & Minoiu, Camelia & Peydr�, Jos� Luis & Presbitero, Andrea, 2017. "Financial Development and Monetary Policy: Loan Applications, Rates, and Real Effects," CEPR Discussion Papers 12171, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    7. Ernesto Crivelli & Sanjeev Gupta & Carlos Mulas-Granados & Carolina Correa-Caro, 2016. "Fragmented Politics and Public Debt," IMF Working Papers 16/190, International Monetary Fund.
    8. De Haas, Ralph & Djourelova, Milena & Nikolova, Elena, 2016. "The Great Recession and social preferences: Evidence from Ukraine," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 44(1), pages 92-107.
    9. repec:bla:ecaffa:v:37:y:2017:i:3:p:382-396 is not listed on IDEAS
    10. Reinhart, Carmen M. & Trebesch, Christoph, 2014. "A Distant Mirror of Debt, Default, and Relief," CEPR Discussion Papers 10195, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    11. Oksana Kramarenko, 2015. "The Development of Strategic Bank Lending Industries in the Context of Globalization," Economy of region, Centre for Economic Security, Institute of Economics of Ural Branch of Russian Academy of Sciences, vol. 1(3), pages 228-241.
    12. Octavia Foarta, 2016. "Politically Feasible Public Bailouts," 2016 Meeting Papers 1479, Society for Economic Dynamics.
    13. Claudia I. Dobre & Costin I. Răsăuţeanu, 2016. "Global Economic Crisis and Government Intervention," Ovidius University Annals, Economic Sciences Series, Ovidius University of Constantza, Faculty of Economic Sciences, vol. 0(2), pages 14-19, February.
    14. Carmen M. Reinhart & Christoph Trebesch, 2016. "Sovereign Debt Relief And Its Aftermath," Journal of the European Economic Association, European Economic Association, vol. 14(1), pages 215-251, February.
    15. Frieden, Jeffry, 2015. "The political economy of adjustment and rebalancing," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 52(C), pages 4-14.
    16. Andrea Goldstein & Alessia Amighini & Jeffry A. Frieden, 2016. "Macroeconomic Rebalancing in China and the G20," China & World Economy, Institute of World Economics and Politics, Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, vol. 24(4), pages 15-33, July.
    17. David Lodge & Marta Rodriguez-Vives, 2013. "How long can austerity persist? The factors that sustain fiscal consolidations," European Journal of Government and Economics, Europa Grande, vol. 2(1), pages 5-24, June.
    18. Hansen, Ole-Petter Moe & Legge, Stefan, 2015. "Trading off Welfare and Immigration in Europe," Discussion Paper Series in Economics 22/2015, Norwegian School of Economics, Department of Economics.
    19. Francesco Trebbi & Kairong Xiao, 2015. "Regulation and Market Liquidity," NBER Working Papers 21739, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • D72 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Political Processes: Rent-seeking, Lobbying, Elections, Legislatures, and Voting Behavior
    • E32 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - Business Fluctuations; Cycles
    • E44 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Money and Interest Rates - - - Financial Markets and the Macroeconomy
    • G01 - Financial Economics - - General - - - Financial Crises
    • H63 - Public Economics - - National Budget, Deficit, and Debt - - - Debt; Debt Management; Sovereign Debt

    Lists

    This item is featured on the following reading lists or Wikipedia pages:
    1. Resolving Debt Overhang: Political Constraints in the Aftermath of Financial Crises (AEJ:MA 2014) in ReplicationWiki

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:aea:aejmac:v:6:y:2014:i:2:p:1-28. 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: (Michael P. Albert). General contact details of provider: http://edirc.repec.org/data/aeaaaea.html .

    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 CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc 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 RePEc Author Service 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.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.