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Uncertainty and Debt-Maturity in Emerging Markets


  • Bussiere Matthieu

    () (European Central Bank)

  • Fratzscher Marcel

    () (European Central Bank)

  • Koeniger Winfried

    () (IZA, University of Bonn)


Although a lot has been written on the link between debt maturity and financial crises, it remains puzzling why the private sector in emerging market economies holds such a large share of short-term debt in the presence of substantial macroeconomic risk. To understand this phenomenon, we propose a simple model in which debt maturity depends on economic uncertainty about investment returns. We show in particular that if lenders are risk averse, higher uncertainty can (i) lower the total debt level a country is able to borrow and (ii) tilt the debt profile towards short-term debt. We take these model implications to the data using a panel of 28 emerging market economies and various indicators for macroeconomic uncertainty. We find substantial empirical support for the model's predictions.

Suggested Citation

  • Bussiere Matthieu & Fratzscher Marcel & Koeniger Winfried, 2006. "Uncertainty and Debt-Maturity in Emerging Markets," The B.E. Journal of Macroeconomics, De Gruyter, vol. 6(1), pages 1-28, March.
  • Handle: RePEc:bpj:bejmac:v:topics.6:y:2006:i:1:n:5

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    Cited by:

    1. Matthieu Bussière, 2013. "Balance of payment crises in emerging markets: how early were the ‘early’ warning signals?," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 45(12), pages 1601-1623, April.
    2. Bakis, Ozan & Karanfil, Fatih & Polat, Sezgin, 2012. "Interactions between bank behavior and financial structure: evidence from a developing country," GIAM Working Papers 12-1, Galatasaray University Economic Research Center.

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