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The Role of Interest Rates and Productivity Shocks in Emerging Market Fluctuations

  • Mark Aguiar
  • Guita Gopinath

In this paper we use a quantitative model to explore the potential frictions that distinguish emerging market business cycles from developed small open economies. Following Aguiar and Gopinath (2007) we allow total factor productivity (TFP) to have a stationary and an integrated component. We also allow for shocks to the consumption and investment Euler Equations that operate through the interest rate. These “wedges” represent changes in the intertemporal marginal rate of transformation, which may be due to changes in observed interest rates, unobserved borrowing constraints, or other financial frictions. We estimate the model using data from Mexico and Canada. We show that interest rate shocks orthogonal to domestic TFP fail to explain the behavior of emerging markets. We then allow for interest rates to respond to/co-vary with productivity shocks. We find that emerging market business cycles appear to be driven by large shocks to trend income combined with relatively small transitory shocks tha co-vary with the interest rate.

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Paper provided by Central Bank of Chile in its series Working Papers Central Bank of Chile with number 445.

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Date of creation: Dec 2007
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Handle: RePEc:chb:bcchwp:445
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  1. Mark Aguiar & Gita Gopinath, 2004. "Defaultable debt, interest rates and the current account," Proceedings, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, issue Jun.
  2. Aiyagari, S Rao, 1994. "Uninsured Idiosyncratic Risk and Aggregate Saving," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 109(3), pages 659-84, August.
  3. Stephanie Schmitt-Grohe & Martin Uribe, 2002. "Closing Small Open Economy Models," NBER Working Papers 9270, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. 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.
  5. James A. Schmitz, Jr. & Arilton Teixeira, 2008. "Privatization's Impact on Private Productivity: The Case of Brazilian Iron Ore," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 11(4), pages 745-760, October.
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