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Commodity Price Volatility and the Sources of Growth

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  • Cavalcanti, T.V.de V.
  • Mohaddes, K.
  • Raissi, M.

Abstract

This paper studies the impact of the level and volatility of commodity terms of trade on economic growth, as well as on the three main growth channels: total factor productivity, physical capital accumulation, and human capital acquisition. We argue that volatility, rather than abundance per se, drives the "resource curse" paradox and also investigate empirically whether export diversification of commodity dependent countries contribute to faster growth. We use the standard system GMM approach as well as an augmented version of the pooled mean group (PMG) methodology of Pesaran et al. (1999) for estimation. The latter takes account of cross-country heterogeneity and cross-sectional dependence, while the former controls for biases associated with simultaneity and unobserved country-specific effects. Using both annual data for 1970-2007 and five-year non-overlapping observations, we find that while commodity terms of trade growth enhances real output per capita, volatility exerts a negative impact on economic growth operating mainly through lower accumulation of physical capital. Our results indicate that the negative growth effects of CTOT volatility offset the positive impact of commodity booms.

Suggested Citation

  • Cavalcanti, T.V.de V. & Mohaddes, K. & Raissi, M., 2011. "Commodity Price Volatility and the Sources of Growth," Cambridge Working Papers in Economics 1112, Faculty of Economics, University of Cambridge.
  • Handle: RePEc:cam:camdae:1112
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Growth; resource curse; commodity prices; volatility;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • C23 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Single Equation Models; Single Variables - - - Models with Panel Data; Spatio-temporal Models
    • F43 - International Economics - - Macroeconomic Aspects of International Trade and Finance - - - Economic Growth of Open Economies
    • O13 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Agriculture; Natural Resources; Environment; Other Primary Products
    • O40 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity - - - General

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