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International macroeconomic fluctuations and the current account


  • Mathias Hoffmann


Intertemporal models of the current account generally assume that global shocks do not affect the current account. We use this assumption to identify global and country-specific shocks in a bivariate VAR of output and the current account. Cross-country evidence from the G7 economies suggests that this identification works surprisingly well. We then employ our method to collect stylized facts on international macroeconomic fluctuations. We find that long-term output growth is driven mainly by global factors in most G7 countries and that country-specific shocks are less persistent and generally less volatile than global shocks.

Suggested Citation

  • Mathias Hoffmann, 2003. "International macroeconomic fluctuations and the current account," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 36(2), pages 401-420, May.
  • Handle: RePEc:cje:issued:v:36:y:2003:i:2:p:401-420

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Mike Artis & Hans-Martin Krolzig & Juan Toro, 2004. "The European business cycle," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 56(1), pages 1-44, January.
    2. Giancarlo Corsetti & Panagiotis T. Konstantinou, 2012. "What Drives US Foreign Borrowing? Evidence on the External Adjustment to Transitory and Permanent Shocks," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 102(2), pages 1062-1092, April.
    3. Jens R Clausen & Magda Kandil, 2009. "On Cyclicality in the Current and Financial Accounts: Evidence from Nine Industrial Countries," Eastern Economic Journal, Palgrave Macmillan;Eastern Economic Association, vol. 35(3), pages 338-366.
    4. Becker, Sascha O. & Hoffmann, Mathias, 2006. "Intra- and international risk-sharing in the short run and the long run," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 50(3), pages 777-806, April.
    5. Hoffman, Mathias, 2001. "The Relative Dynamics of Investment and the Current Account in the G7-Economies," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 111(471), pages 148-163, May.
    6. Mathias Hoffmann & Wei Liao, 2011. "The Cross-Section of Country News, Decoupling Expectations, and Global Business Cycles," Working Papers 342011, Hong Kong Institute for Monetary Research.
    7. José García-Solanes & Jesús Rodríguez-López & José Torres, 2011. "Demand Shocks and Trade Balance Dynamics," Open Economies Review, Springer, vol. 22(4), pages 739-766, September.
    8. Corsetti, Giancarlo & Konstantinou, Panagiotis T, 2009. "What Drives US Foreign Borrowing? Evidence on External Adjustment to Transitory and Permanent Shocks," CEPR Discussion Papers 7134, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    9. Boileau, Martin & Normandin, Michel & Powo Fosso, Bruno, 2010. "Global versus country-specific shocks and international business cycles," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 32(1), pages 1-16, March.
    10. Hoffmann, Mathias & MacDonald, Ronald, 2009. "Real exchange rates and real interest rate differentials: A present value interpretation," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 53(8), pages 952-970, November.
    11. Hoffmann, Mathias, 2013. "What drives China's current account?," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 32(C), pages 856-883.
    12. Ghassan, Hassan B. & Al-Jefri, Essam H., 2016. "الحساب الجاري للاقتصاد السعودي عبر نموذج داخلي الزمن دلائل من منهجية نموذج التقهقر الذاتي البنيوي
      [The Current Account of Saudi Economy through Intertemporal Model: Evidence from SVAR]
      ," MPRA Paper 80302, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised Jun 2017.
    13. Murat, Atilim & Tokat, Ekin, 2009. "Forecasting oil price movements with crack spread futures," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 31(1), pages 85-90, January.
    14. Elif C. Arbatli, 2008. "Futures Markets, Oil Prices and the Intertemporal Approach to the Current Account," Staff Working Papers 08-48, Bank of Canada.
    15. John C. Bluedorn, 2005. "Hurricanes: Intertemporal Trade and Capital Shocks," Economics Series Working Papers 241, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
    16. Alain Hecq & Franz Palm & Jean-Pierre Urbain, 2002. "Separation, Weak Exogeneity, And P-T Decomposition In Cointegrated Var Systems With Common Features," Econometric Reviews, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 21(3), pages 273-307.
    17. Mathias Hoffmann & Ulrich Woitek, 2011. "Emerging from the war: Gold Standard mentality, current accounts and the international business cycle 1885-1939," ECON - Working Papers 057, Department of Economics - University of Zurich.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • F41 - International Economics - - Macroeconomic Aspects of International Trade and Finance - - - Open Economy Macroeconomics
    • F43 - International Economics - - Macroeconomic Aspects of International Trade and Finance - - - Economic Growth of Open Economies
    • C32 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Multiple or Simultaneous Equation Models; Multiple Variables - - - Time-Series Models; Dynamic Quantile Regressions; Dynamic Treatment Effect Models; Diffusion Processes; State Space Models


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