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Default and the Maturity Structure in Sovereign Bonds

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  • Cristina Arellano
  • Ananth Ramanarayanan

Abstract

This paper studies the maturity composition and the term structure of interest rate spreads of government debt in emerging markets. In the data, when interest rate spreads rise, debt maturity shortens and the spread on short-term bonds rises more than the spread on long-term bonds. We build a dynamic model of international borrowing with endogenous default and multiple debt maturities. Long-term debt provides a hedge against future fluctuations in spreads, whereas short-term debt is more effective at providing incentives to repay. The trade-off between these hedging and incentive benefits is quantitatively important for understanding the maturity structure in emerging markets.

Suggested Citation

  • Cristina Arellano & Ananth Ramanarayanan, 2012. "Default and the Maturity Structure in Sovereign Bonds," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 120(2), pages 187-232.
  • Handle: RePEc:ucp:jpolec:doi:10.1086/666589
    DOI: 10.1086/666589
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