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Pourquoi la France accumule-t-elle des surplus de balance courante ?

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  • Pierre-Richard Agenor
  • Claude Bismut

Abstract

[fre] Les récents surplus extérieurs de la France ne résultent ni de la sur-compétitivité des entreprises ni de la faiblesse de l'activité intérieure. Dans un monde de forte mobilité des capitaux, la balance courante reflète les comportements d'optimisation intertemporelle des agents privés. Les caractéristiques structurelles de l'économie française et les perspectives d'évolution des revenus disponibles des ménages justifient une position excédentaire, et celle-ci tend à prévaloir en l'absence d'intervention du gouvernement. Mais la conversion confirmée des autorités à l'économie de marché entraîne l'effacement de la contrainte extérieure et un déficit transitoire pourrait aujourd'hui se produire sans susciter de pression sur la monnaie. Par ailleurs, les modèles conventionnels de balance commerciale ne permettent plus de rendre compte des évolutions des soldes extérieurs car ils n'intègrent pas la distinction, devenue cruciale dans une perspective intertemporelle, entre chocs permanents et chocs transitoires. En revanche, les modèles intertemporels de la balance courante permettent de progresser vers une meilleure compréhension de l'évolution des soldes extérieurs. [eng] Recent external surpluses in France do not come from firms' overcom- petitiveness or a weak domestic activity. In a world of high capital mobility the current account balance reflects the private sector s intertemporal optimizing behavior. Structural features and the outlook of household's disposable income could lead to an external surplus. But with the re-affirmed commitment of the French authorities to the market economy, the external constraint vanishes and a deficit without pressure on the franc becomes possible. In addition conventional trade balance models do not make the - crucial in an intertemporal perspective — distinction between permanent and transitory shocks. However intertemporal models of the current account allow a better understanding of recent external sector developments.

Suggested Citation

  • Pierre-Richard Agenor & Claude Bismut, 1999. "Pourquoi la France accumule-t-elle des surplus de balance courante ?," Revue Française d'Économie, Programme National Persée, vol. 14(2), pages 61-105.
  • Handle: RePEc:prs:rfreco:rfeco_0769-0479_1999_num_14_2_1080
    Note: DOI:10.3406/rfeco.1999.1080
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    Cited by:

    1. Abdelaziz Rouabah, 2005. "Les déterminants du solde de la balance des transactions courantes au Luxembourg," BCL working papers 13, Central Bank of Luxembourg.

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