IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/eee/deveco/v29y1988i3p253-268.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

Financing vs. forgiving a debt overhang

Author

Listed:
  • Krugman, Paul

Abstract

This paper examines the tradeoffs facing creditors of a country whose debt is large enough that the country cannot attract voluntary new lending. If the country is unable to meet its debt service requirements out of current income, the creditors have two choices. They can finance the country, lending at an expected loss in the hope that the country will eventually be able to repay its debt after all; or they can forgive, reducing the debt level to one that the country can repay. The post-1983 debt strategy of the IMF and the US has relied on financing, but many current calls for debt reform call for forgiveness instead. The paper shows that the choice between financing and forgiveness represents a tradeoff. Financing gives the creditors an option value: if the country turns out to do relatively well, creditors will not have written down their claims unnecessarily. However, the burden of debt distorts the country's incentives, since the benefits of good performance go largely to creditors rather than itself. The paper also shows that the tradeoff itself can be improved if both financing and forgiveness are made contingent on states of nature that the country cannot affect, such as oil prices, world interest rates, etc.
(This abstract was borrowed from another version of this item.)

Suggested Citation

  • Krugman, Paul, 1988. "Financing vs. forgiving a debt overhang," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 29(3), pages 253-268, November.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:deveco:v:29:y:1988:i:3:p:253-268
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/0304-3878(88)90044-2
    Download Restriction: Full text for ScienceDirect subscribers only
    ---><---

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version below or search for a different version of it.

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Bulow, Jeremy & Rogoff, Kenneth, 1989. "A Constant Recontracting Model of Sovereign Debt," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 97(1), pages 155-178, February.
    2. Jonathan Eaton & Mark Gersovitz & Joseph E. Stiglitz, 1991. "The Pure Theory of Country Risk," NBER Chapters, in: International Volatility and Economic Growth: The First Ten Years of The International Seminar on Macroeconomics, pages 391-435, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Most related items

    These are the items that most often cite the same works as this one and are cited by the same works as this one.
    1. Agenor, Pierre-Richard & Aizenman, Joshua, 1998. "Volatility and the welfare costs of financial market integration," Policy Research Working Paper Series 1974, The World Bank.
    2. Brian D. Wright & Kenneth M. Kletzer, 2000. "Sovereign Debt as Intertemporal Barter," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 90(3), pages 621-639, June.
    3. Peter Rowland, 2004. "The Colombian Sovereign Spread and its Determinants," Borradores de Economia 315, Banco de la Republica de Colombia.
    4. Peter Rowland, 2005. "Buyback of Colombian Sovereign Debt," Borradores de Economia 331, Banco de la Republica de Colombia.
    5. Michael Dooley & Mark R. Stone, 1993. "Endogenous Creditor Seniority and External Debt Values," IMF Staff Papers, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 40(2), pages 395-413, June.
    6. Constantin Mellios & Eric Paget-Blanc, 2006. "Which factors determine sovereign credit ratings?," The European Journal of Finance, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 12(4), pages 361-377.
    7. Joshua Aizenman & Stephen J. Turnovsky, 2002. "Reserve Requirements on Sovereign Debt in the Presence of Moral Hazard -- on Debtors or Creditors?," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 112(476), pages 107-132, January.
    8. Plaut, Steven E. & Melnik, Arie L., 2003. "International institutional lending arrangements to sovereign borrowers," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 22(4), pages 459-481, August.
    9. Bulow, Jeremy & Rogoff, Kenneth, 1989. "Sovereign Debt: Is to Forgive to Forget?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 79(1), pages 43-50, March.
    10. Álvarez Nogal, Carlos, 2003. "The role of institutions to solve sovereing debt problems : the Spanish monarchy's credit (1516-1665)," IFCS - Working Papers in Economic History.WH wh030804, Universidad Carlos III de Madrid. Instituto Figuerola.
    11. Peter Rowland, 2005. "Buyback Of Colombian Sovereign Debt," BORRADORES DE ECONOMIA 002073, BANCO DE LA REPÚBLICA.
    12. Maurer, Noel & Gomberg, Andrei, 2004. "When the State is Untrustworthy: Public Finance and Private Banking in Porfirian Mexico," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 64(4), pages 1087-1107, December.
    13. Kletzer, Kenneth M. & Newbery, David M. & Wright, Brian D., 1990. "Alternative instruments for smoothing the consumption of primary commodity exporters," Policy Research Working Paper Series 558, The World Bank.
    14. Rose, Andrew K., 2005. "One reason countries pay their debts: renegotiation and international trade," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 77(1), pages 189-206, June.
    15. Marcel Fafchamps & Flore Gubert, 2007. "Contingent Loan Repayment in the Philippines," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 55(4), pages 633-667, July.
    16. Jääskelä, Jarkko, 1997. "Incomplete insurance market and its policy implication within European Monetary Union," Research Discussion Papers 8/1997, Bank of Finland.
    17. Jonathan P. Thomas, 2001. "Default Costs, Willingness to Pay and Sovereign Debt Buybacks," International Finance 0103002, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    18. Eijffinger, Sylvester C W & Karatas, Bilge, 2013. "Three Sisters: The Interlinkage between Sovereign Debt, Currency and Banking Crises," CEPR Discussion Papers 9369, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    19. Kletzer, Kenneth, 2004. "Sovereign Debt, Volatility and Insurance," Santa Cruz Department of Economics, Working Paper Series qt71b785gd, Department of Economics, UC Santa Cruz.
    20. Fafchamps, Marcel, 1996. "Sovereign debt, structural adjustment, and conditionality," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 50(2), pages 313-335, August.

    More about this item

    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:eee:deveco:v:29:y:1988:i:3:p:253-268. 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: . General contact details of provider: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/devec .

    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 bibliographic 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.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: Nithya Sathishkumar (email available below). General contact details of provider: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/devec .

    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.