Monetary union and productivity differences in Mercosur countries
This paper investigates cross-country productivity convergence among Mercosur members plus associates (Chile and Bolivia) and Peru, during the period 1960-1999. The testing strategy is based on the definitions of time-series convergence by Bernard and Durlauf (1995), and applies sequentially the multivariate unit root tests proposed by Sarno and Taylor (1998), Flôres, Preumont and Szafarz (1995) and Breuer, Mc Nown and Wallace (1999). The last two tests allow to identify the countries that converge. Our results show evidence of convergence among the four Mercosur countries, using either Argentina or Brazil as benchmark. Weaker evidence of convergence is also found with Bolivia. The results point out that monetary union among the Southern Cone economies, though a far objective, is not without sense.
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