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Sovereign Default, Interest Rates and Political Uncertainty in Emerging Markets

  • Gabriel Cuadra
  • Horacio Sapriza

Emerging economies tend to experience larger political uncertainty and more default episodes than developed countries. This paper studies the effect of political uncertainty on sovereign default and interest rate spreads in emerging markets. The paper develops a quantitative model of sovereign debt and default under political uncertainty in a small open economy. Consistent with empirical evidence, the quantitative analysis shows that higher levels of political uncertainty significantly raise the default frequency and both the level and volatility of the spreads. When parties borrow from international credit markets, the presence of political uncertainty induces a short-sight behavior in politicians.

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Paper provided by Banco de México in its series Working Papers with number 2006-02.

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Date of creation: Feb 2006
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Handle: RePEc:bdm:wpaper:2006-02
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  25. Cristina Arellano & Enrique G. Mendoza, 2002. "Credit Frictions and "Sudden Stop" in Small Open Economies: An Equilibrium Business Cycle Framework for Emerging Markets Crises," IDB Publications (Working Papers) 6499, Inter-American Development Bank.
  26. Alfaro, Laura & Kanczuk, Fabio, 2005. "Sovereign debt as a contingent claim: a quantitative approach," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 65(2), pages 297-314, March.
  27. Marcel Peter, 2002. "Estimating Default Probabilities of Emerging Market Sovereigns: A New Look at a Not-So-New Literature," IHEID Working Papers 06-2002, Economics Section, The Graduate Institute of International Studies.
  28. Marina Azzimonti Renzo, 2004. "On the dynamic inefficiency of governments," 2004 Meeting Papers 228, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  29. Emanuel Kohlscheen, 2006. "Why are there serial defaulters? Quasi-experimental evidence from Constitutions," WEF Working Papers 0003, ESRC World Economy and Finance Research Programme, Birkbeck, University of London.
  30. Van Rijckeghem, Caroline & Weder di Mauro, Beatrice, 2004. "The Politics Of Debt Crises," CEPR Discussion Papers 4683, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  31. Eaton, Jonathan & Gersovitz, Mark, 1981. "Debt with Potential Repudiation: Theoretical and Empirical Analysis," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 48(2), pages 289-309, April.
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