IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/eee/moneco/v54y2007i8p2375-2398.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

Transfer problem dynamics: Macroeconomics of the Franco-Prussian war indemnity

Author

Listed:
  • Devereux, Michael B.
  • Smith, Gregor W.

Abstract

We study the classic transfer problem of predicting the effects of an international transfer on the terms of trade and the current account. A two-country model with debt and capital allows for realistic features of historical transfers: they follow wartime increases in government spending and are financed partly by borrowing. The model is applied to the largest historical transfer, the Franco-Prussian War indemnity of 1871-1873. In these three years, France transferred to Germany an amount equal to 22 percent of a year¡¦s GDP. We investigate the ability of the model to account for the historical path of French GDP, terms of trade, net exports, and aggregate consumption. When combined with measured shocks to fiscal policy and productivity over the period, the model provides a very close fit to the historical sample path. This makes a strong case for the dynamic general equilibrium approach to studying the transfer problem. More generally, our results provide striking evidence of the importance of international capital markets in the nineteenth century.
(This abstract was borrowed from another version of this item.)

Suggested Citation

  • Devereux, Michael B. & Smith, Gregor W., 2007. "Transfer problem dynamics: Macroeconomics of the Franco-Prussian war indemnity," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 54(8), pages 2375-2398, November.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:moneco:v:54:y:2007:i:8:p:2375-2398
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0304-3932(07)00074-8
    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. Backus, David K & Kehoe, Patrick J & Kydland, Finn E, 1994. "Dynamics of the Trade Balance and the Terms of Trade: The J-Curve?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 84(1), pages 84-103, March.
    2. Schmitt-Grohe, Stephanie & Uribe, Martin, 2003. "Closing small open economy models," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 61(1), pages 163-185, October.
    3. Flandreau, Marc, 1996. "The French Crime of 1873: An Essay on the Emergence of the International Gold Standard, 1870–1880," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 56(4), pages 862-897, December.
    4. Bhagwati, Jagdish N & Brecher, Richard A & Hatta, Tatsuo, 1983. "The Generalized Theory of Transfers and Welfare: Bilateral Transfers in a Multilateral World," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 73(4), pages 606-618, September.
    5. Obstfeld, Maurice & Rogoff, Kenneth, 1995. "The intertemporal approach to the current account," Handbook of International Economics, in: G. M. Grossman & K. Rogoff (ed.), Handbook of International Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 34, pages 1731-1799, Elsevier.
    6. Maurice Obstfeld & Kenneth S. Rogoff, 1996. "Foundations of International Macroeconomics," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262150476, December.
    7. Philip L. Brock, 1996. "International Transfers, the Relative Price on Non-Traded Goods, and the Current Account," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 29(1), pages 163-180, February.
    8. Gavin, Michael, 1992. "Intertemporal Dimensions of International Economic Adjustment: Evidence from the Franco-Prussian War Indemnity," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 82(2), pages 174-179, May.
    9. Pierpaolo Benigno, 2009. "Price Stability with Imperfect Financial Integration," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 41(s1), pages 121-149, February.
    10. Stockman, Alan C & Tesar, Linda L, 1995. "Tastes and Technology in a Two-Country Model of the Business Cycle: Explaining International Comovements," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 85(1), pages 168-185, March.
    11. Philip R. Lane & Gian Maria Milesi-Ferretti, 2004. "The Transfer Problem Revisited: Net Foreign Assets and Real Exchange Rates," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 86(4), pages 841-857, November.
    12. Jonathan D. Ostry & Carmen M. Reinhart, 1992. "Private Saving and Terms of Trade Shocks: Evidence from Developing Countries," IMF Staff Papers, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 39(3), pages 495-517, September.
    13. I. A. McDougall, 1965. "Non-Traded Goods and the Transfer Problem," The Review of Economic Studies, Review of Economic Studies Ltd, vol. 32(1), pages 67-81.
    14. Ohanian, Lee E, 1997. "The Macroeconomic Effects of War Finance in the United States: World War II and the Korean War," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 87(1), pages 23-40, March.
    15. Bernanke, Ben S. & Gertler, Mark & Gilchrist, Simon, 1999. "The financial accelerator in a quantitative business cycle framework," Handbook of Macroeconomics, in: J. B. Taylor & M. Woodford (ed.), Handbook of Macroeconomics, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 21, pages 1341-1393, Elsevier.
    16. Mill, John Stuart, 1874. "Essays on Some Unsettled Questions of Political Economy," History of Economic Thought Books, McMaster University Archive for the History of Economic Thought, edition 2, number mill1874.
    17. Heathcote, Jonathan & Perri, Fabrizio, 2004. "Financial globalization and real regionalization," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 119(1), pages 207-243, November.
    18. Kindleberger, Charles P., 1993. "A Financial History of Western Europe," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, edition 2, number 9780195077384, Decembrie.
    19. G. M. Grossman & K. Rogoff (ed.), 1995. "Handbook of International Economics," Handbook of International Economics, Elsevier, edition 1, volume 3, number 3.
    20. Philip R. Lane & Gian Maria Milesi-Ferretti, 2002. "Long-Term Capital Movements," NBER Chapters, in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 2001, Volume 16, pages 73-136, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    21. D. S. Landes, 1982. "The Spoilers Foiled: The Exclusion of Prussian Finance from the French Liberation Loan of 1871," Palgrave Macmillan Books, in: Charles P. Kindleberger & Guido Tella (ed.), Economics in the Long View, chapter 4, pages 67-110, Palgrave Macmillan.
    22. Ritschl, Albrecht, 1998. "Reparation transfers, the Borchardt hypothesis and the Great Depression in Germany, 1929–32: A guided tour for hard-headed Keynesians," European Review of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 2(1), pages 49-72, April.
    23. Brakman,Steven & Marrewijk,Charles van, 2009. "The Economics of International Transfers," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521118729, November.
    24. Burstein, Ariel T. & Neves, Joao C. & Rebelo, Sergio, 2003. "Distribution costs and real exchange rate dynamics during exchange-rate-based stabilizations," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 50(6), pages 1189-1214, September.
    25. David K. Backus & Patrick J. Kehoe & Finn E. Kydland, 1992. "Dynamics of the trade balance and the terms of trade: the J-curve revisited," Discussion Paper / Institute for Empirical Macroeconomics 65, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
    26. Jonathan D. Ostry & Carmen M. Reinhart, 1992. "Private Saving and Terms of Trade Shocks: Evidence from Developing Countries," IMF Staff Papers, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 39(3), pages 495-517, September.
    27. Jones, Ronald W., 1975. "Presumption and the transfer problem," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 5(3), pages 263-274, August.
    28. Devereux, Michael B. & Smith, Gregor W., 2007. "Transfer problem dynamics: Macroeconomics of the Franco-Prussian war indemnity," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 54(8), pages 2375-2398, November.
    29. Flandreau, Marc, 1995. "An Essay on the Emergence of the International Gold Standard, 1870-80," CEPR Discussion Papers 1210, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    30. Kollmann, Robert, 2002. "Monetary policy rules in the open economy: effects on welfare and business cycles," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 49(5), pages 989-1015, July.
    31. White, Eugene N., 2001. "Making the French pay: The costs and consequences of the Napoleonic reparations," European Review of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 5(3), pages 337-365, December.
    32. Marc Flandreau, 1996. "The French Crime of 1873: An Essay on the Emergence of the International Gold Standard, 1870-1880," Post-Print hal-03416271, HAL.
    33. Marc Flandreau, 1996. "The French Crime of 1873: An Essay on the Emergence of the International Gold Standard, 1870-1880," Post-Print hal-03416270, HAL.
    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. Auray, Stéphane & Eyquem, Aurélien, 2019. "Episodes of war and peace in an estimated open economy model," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 105(C), pages 203-249.
    2. Lewis, Frank D., 2007. "Compensation and the abandoned property of the 1948 Palestinian refugees: Assessment and implications," Explorations in Economic History, Elsevier, vol. 44(4), pages 523-537, October.
    3. Boileau, Martin & Normandin, Michel, 2008. "Dynamics of the current account and interest differentials," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 74(1), pages 35-52, January.
    4. Gül Ertan Özgüzer, 2009. "Worthy Transfers? A Dynamic Analysis of Turkey's Accession to the European Union," 2009 Meeting Papers 781, Society for Economic Dynamics.
    5. Emil Verner & Győző Gyöngyösi, 2020. "Household Debt Revaluation and the Real Economy: Evidence from a Foreign Currency Debt Crisis," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 110(9), pages 2667-2702, September.
    6. Bodenstein, Martin, 2013. "Equilibrium stability in open economy models," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 35(C), pages 1-13.
    7. Pandey, Dharen Kumar & Lucey, Brian M. & Kumar, Satish, 2023. "Border disputes, conflicts, war, and financial markets research: A systematic review," Research in International Business and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 65(C).
    8. Boileau, Martin & Normandin, Michel, 2008. "Closing international real business cycle models with restricted financial markets," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 27(5), pages 733-756, September.
    9. Martin Boileau & Michel Normandin, 2004. "The Current Account and the Interest Differential in Canada," Cahiers de recherche 0424, CIRPEE.
    10. Gyöngyösi, Győző & Rariga, Judit & Verner, Emil, 2021. "The anatomy of consumption in a household foreign currency debt crisis," SAFE Working Paper Series 332, Leibniz Institute for Financial Research SAFE.
    11. Devereux, Michael B. & Smith, Gregor W., 2007. "Transfer problem dynamics: Macroeconomics of the Franco-Prussian war indemnity," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 54(8), pages 2375-2398, November.
    12. Stéphane Auray & Aurélien Eyquem, 2014. "War, Taxes and Trade," Working Papers 2014-29, Center for Research in Economics and Statistics.
    13. Johri, Alok & Letendre, Marc-André & Luo, Daqing, 2011. "Organizational capital and the international co-movement of investment," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 33(4), pages 511-523.
    14. International Monetary Fund, 2008. "Macroeconomic Effects of EU Transfers in New Member States," IMF Working Papers 2008/223, International Monetary Fund.
    15. Kaufmann, Christoph & Attinasi, Maria Grazia & Hauptmeier, Sebastian, 2023. "Macroeconomic stabilisation properties of a euro area unemployment insurance scheme," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 153(C).
    16. Trionfetti, Federico, 2018. "Firm heterogeneity, comparative advantage and the transfer problem," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 108(C), pages 246-258.
    17. Emek Karaca & Mustafa Tugan, 2017. "Aggregate Dynamics after a Shock to Monetary Policy in Developing Countries," International Journal of Central Banking, International Journal of Central Banking, vol. 13(1), pages 261-296, February.
    18. Pascal Towbin, 2013. "Financial Integration And External Sustainability," International Journal of Finance & Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 18(4), pages 375-395, October.
    19. Gül Ertan Özgüzer & Luca Pensieroso, 2013. "An analysis of Turkey's accession to the European Union," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 46(4), pages 1380-1405, November.
    20. Ram Sewak Dubey & Minwook Kang, 2019. "Transfer paradox in a stable equilibrium," Economic Theory Bulletin, Springer;Society for the Advancement of Economic Theory (SAET), vol. 7(2), pages 259-269, December.
    21. Bodenstein, Martin, 2011. "Closing large open economy models," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 84(2), pages 160-177, July.
    22. Kang, Minwook & Ye, Lei Sandy, 2016. "Advantageous redistribution with three smooth CES utility functions," Journal of Mathematical Economics, Elsevier, vol. 67(C), pages 171-180.
    23. Dong, Baomin & Guo, Yibei, 2018. "The impact of the first Sino-Japanese war indemnity: Transfer problem reexamined," International Review of Economics & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 56(C), pages 15-26.

    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. Cavallo, Michele & Ghironi, Fabio, 2002. "Net foreign assets and the exchange rate: Redux revived," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 49(5), pages 1057-1097, July.
    2. Lane, P.R. & Ganelli, G., 2002. "Dynamic General Equilibrium Analysis: The Open Economy Dimension," CEG Working Papers 20026, Trinity College Dublin, Department of Economics.
    3. Stephen McKnight & Laura Povoledo, 2022. "Endogenous fluctuations and international business cycles," Canadian Journal of Economics/Revue canadienne d'économique, John Wiley & Sons, vol. 55(1), pages 312-348, February.
    4. Coeurdacier, Nicolas, 2009. "Do trade costs in goods market lead to home bias in equities?," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 77(1), pages 86-100, February.
    5. Pau Rabanal, 2006. "Euro-Dollar Real Exchange Rate Dynamics in an Estimated Two-Country Model," Computing in Economics and Finance 2006 87, Society for Computational Economics.
    6. Corsetti, Giancarlo & Dedola, Luca & Leduc, Sylvain, 2010. "Optimal Monetary Policy in Open Economies," Handbook of Monetary Economics, in: Benjamin M. Friedman & Michael Woodford (ed.), Handbook of Monetary Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 16, pages 861-933, Elsevier.
    7. Vicente Tuesta & Mr. Pau Rabanal, 2006. "Euro-Dollar Real Exchange Rate Dynamics in an Estimated Two-Country Model: What is Important and What is Not," IMF Working Papers 2006/177, International Monetary Fund.
    8. Jorge Selaive & Vicente Tuesta, 2006. "The Consumption-Real Exchange Rate Anomaly: Non-Traded Goods, Incomplete Markets and Distribution Services," Working Papers Central Bank of Chile 359, Central Bank of Chile.
    9. Lone Christiansen & Alessandro Prati & Luca Antonio Ricci & Thierry Tressel, 2010. "External Balance in Low-Income Countries," NBER Chapters, in: NBER International Seminar on Macroeconomics 2009, pages 265-322, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    10. Stephen McKnight & Laura Povoledo, 2015. "Can indeterminacy and self-fulfilling expectations help explain international business cycles?," Working Papers 20151504, Department of Accounting, Economics and Finance, Bristol Business School, University of the West of England, Bristol.
    11. Boileau, Martin & Normandin, Michel, 2008. "Dynamics of the current account and interest differentials," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 74(1), pages 35-52, January.
    12. Ghironi, Fabio, 2006. "Macroeconomic interdependence under incomplete markets," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 70(2), pages 428-450, December.
    13. Suescun, Rodrigo, 2020. "A tool for fiscal policy planning in a medium-term fiscal framework: The FMM-MTFF model," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 88(C), pages 431-446.
    14. Kollmann, Robert, 2003. "Monetary Policy Rules in an Interdependent World," CEPR Discussion Papers 4012, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    15. Cardi, Olivier & Restout, Romain & Claeys, Peter, 2020. "Imperfect mobility of labor across sectors and fiscal transmission," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 111(C).
    16. Kollmann, Robert, 2002. "Monetary Policy Rules in a Two-Country World," MPRA Paper 70347, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    17. Maurice Obstfeld & Kenneth S. Rogoff, 2000. "Perspectives on OECD economic integration : implications for U.S. current account adjustment," Proceedings - Economic Policy Symposium - Jackson Hole, Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City, pages 169-208.
    18. Nicolas Coeurdacier & Hélène Rey, 2013. "Home Bias in Open Economy Financial Macroeconomics," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 51(1), pages 63-115, March.
    19. Bertinelli, Luisito & Cardi, Olivier & Restout, Romain, 2022. "Labor market effects of technology shocks biased toward the traded sector," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 138(C).
    20. repec:hal:wpspec:info:hdl:2441/c8dmi8nm4pdjkuc9g81p7j6b6 is not listed on IDEAS
    21. Oyakhilome IBHAGUI, 2017. "Understanding the sources of high current account fluctuations in 5 developed economies," Turkish Economic Review, KSP Journals, vol. 4(3), pages 250-274, September.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • F32 - International Economics - - International Finance - - - Current Account Adjustment; Short-term Capital Movements
    • F41 - International Economics - - Macroeconomic Aspects of International Trade and Finance - - - Open Economy Macroeconomics
    • N14 - Economic History - - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics; Industrial Structure; Growth; Fluctuations - - - Europe: 1913-

    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:moneco:v:54:y:2007:i:8:p:2375-2398. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    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: Catherine Liu (email available below). General contact details of provider: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/inca/505566 .

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service. RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.