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Country portfolios

  • Aart Kraay
  • Norman Loayza
  • Luis Servén

How do countries hold their financial wealth? We construct a new database of countries’ claims on capital located at home and abroad, and international borrowing and lending, covering 68 countries from 1966 to 1997. We find that a small amount of capital flows from rich countries to poor countries. Countries’ foreign asset positions are remarkably persistent, and mostly take the form of foreign loans rather than foreign equity. To interpret these facts, we build a simple model of international capital flows that highlights the interplay between diminishing returns, production risk and sovereign risk. We show that in the presence of reasonable diminishing returns and production risk, the probability that international crises occur twice a century is enough to generate a set of country portfolios that are roughly consistent with the data.

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Paper provided by Central Bank of Chile in its series Working Papers Central Bank of Chile with number 91.

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Date of creation: Apr 2001
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Handle: RePEc:chb:bcchwp:91
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  1. Kraay, Aart & Ventura, Jaume, 1997. "Current accounts in debtor and creditor countries," Policy Research Working Paper Series 1825, The World Bank.
  2. repec:rus:hseeco:123922 is not listed on IDEAS
  3. Gian-Maria Milesi-Ferretti & Philip R. Lane, 1999. "The External Wealth of Nations; Measures of Foreign Assets and Liabilities for Industrial and Developing Countries," IMF Working Papers 99/115, International Monetary Fund.
  4. Reinhart, Carmen & Rogoff, Kenneth & Savastano, Miguel, 2003. "Debt intolerance," MPRA Paper 13932, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  5. Robert E. Hall & Charles I. Jones, 1999. "Why Do Some Countries Produce So Much More Output per Worker than Others?," NBER Working Papers 6564, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Aart Kraay & Norman Loayza & Luis Servén, 2001. "Country portfolios," Working Papers Central Bank of Chile 91, Central Bank of Chile.
  7. Rui Albuquerque, 2004. "The Composition of International Capital Flows: Risk Sharing Through Foreign Direct Investment," International Finance 0405004, EconWPA.
  8. Roberto Chang & Andres Velasco, 1999. "Liquidity Crises in Emerging Markets: Theory and Policy," NBER Working Papers 7272, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Eaton, Jonathan & Fernandez, Raquel, 1995. "Sovereign debt," Handbook of International Economics, in: G. M. Grossman & K. Rogoff (ed.), Handbook of International Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 3, pages 2031-2077 Elsevier.
  10. Lane, Philip & Milesi-Ferretti, Gian Maria, . "External Wealth of Nations," Instructional Stata datasets for econometrics extwealth, Boston College Department of Economics.
  11. Jeremy Bulow & Kenneth Rogoff, 1998. "Sovereign Debt: Is to Forgive to Forget," Levine's Working Paper Archive 209, David K. Levine.
  12. French, Kenneth R & Poterba, James M, 1991. "Investor Diversification and International Equity Markets," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 81(2), pages 222-26, May.
  13. Karen K. Lewis, 1999. "Trying to Explain Home Bias in Equities and Consumption," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 37(2), pages 571-608, June.
  14. Martin Feldstein & Charles Horioka, 1979. "Domestic Savings and International Capital Flows," NBER Working Papers 0310, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  15. Maurice Obstfeld & Kenneth S. Rogoff, 1996. "Foundations of International Macroeconomics," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262150476, June.
  16. Lucas, Robert E, Jr, 1990. "Why Doesn't Capital Flow from Rich to Poor Countries?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 80(2), pages 92-96, May.
  17. Mark Rider, 1994. "External Debt and Liabilities of Industrial Countries," RBA Research Discussion Papers rdp9405, Reserve Bank of Australia.
  18. 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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