IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/een/camaaa/2021-34.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Rising temperatures, falling ratings: The effect of climate change on sovereign creditworthiness

Author

Listed:
  • Patrycja Klusak
  • Matthew Agarwala
  • Matt Burke
  • Moritz Kraemer
  • Kamiar Mohaddes

Abstract

Enthusiasm for ‘greening the financial system’ is welcome, but a fundamental challenge remains: financial decision makers lack the necessary information. It is not enough to know that climate change is bad. Markets need credible, digestible information on how climate change translates into material risks. To bridge the gap between climate science and real-world financial indicators, we simulate the effect of climate change on sovereign credit ratings for 108 countries, creating the world’s first climate-adjusted sovereign credit rating. Under various warming scenarios, we find evidence of climate-induced sovereign downgrades as early as 2030, increasing in intensity and across more countries over the century. We find strong evidence that stringent climate policy consistent with limiting warming to below 2°C, honouring the Paris Climate Agreement, and following RCP 2.6 could nearly eliminate the effect of climate change on ratings. In contrast, under higher emissions scenarios (i.e., RCP 8.5), 63 sovereigns experience climate-induced downgrades by 2030, with an average reduction of 1.02 notches, rising to 80 sovereigns facing an average downgrade of 2.48 notches by 2100. We calculate the effect of climate-induced sovereign downgrades on the cost of corporate and sovereign debt. Across the sample, climate change could increase the annual interest payments on sovereign debt by US$ 22–33 billion under RCP 2.6, rising to US$ 137–205 billion under RCP 8.5. The additional cost to corporates is US$ 7.2–12.6 billion under RCP 2.6, and US$ 35.8–62.6 billion under RCP 8.5.

Suggested Citation

  • Patrycja Klusak & Matthew Agarwala & Matt Burke & Moritz Kraemer & Kamiar Mohaddes, 2021. "Rising temperatures, falling ratings: The effect of climate change on sovereign creditworthiness," CAMA Working Papers 2021-34, Centre for Applied Macroeconomic Analysis, Crawford School of Public Policy, The Australian National University.
  • Handle: RePEc:een:camaaa:2021-34
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: https://cama.crawford.anu.edu.au/sites/default/files/publication/cama_crawford_anu_edu_au/2021-03/34_2021_klusak_agarwala_burke_kraemer_mohaddes.pdf
    Download Restriction: no
    ---><---

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Graciela Kaminsky & Sergio L. Schmukler, 2002. "Emerging Market Instability: Do Sovereign Ratings Affect Country Risk and Stock Returns?," The World Bank Economic Review, World Bank, vol. 16(2), pages 171-195, August.
    2. Marshall Burke & Solomon M. Hsiang & Edward Miguel, 2015. "Global non-linear effect of temperature on economic production," Nature, Nature, vol. 527(7577), pages 235-239, November.
    3. Chen, Sheng-Syan & Chen, Hsien-Yi & Chang, Chong-Chuo & Yang, Shu-Ling, 2016. "The relation between sovereign credit rating revisions and economic growth," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 64(C), pages 90-100.
    4. Patricia Crifo & Marc-Arthur Diaye & Rim Oueghlissi, 2014. "Measuring the effect of government ESG performance on sovereign borrowing cost," CIRANO Working Papers 2014s-37, CIRANO.
    5. Kahn, Matthew E. & Mohaddes, Kamiar & Ng, Ryan N.C. & Pesaran, M. Hashem & Raissi, Mehdi & Yang, Jui-Chung, 2021. "Long-term macroeconomic effects of climate change: A cross-country analysis," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 104(C).
    6. Antonio Afonso & Pedro Gomes & Philipp Rother, 2009. "Ordered response models for sovereign debt ratings," Applied Economics Letters, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 16(8), pages 769-773.
    7. Borensztein, Eduardo & Cowan, Kevin & Valenzuela, Patricio, 2013. "Sovereign ceilings “lite”? The impact of sovereign ratings on corporate ratings," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 37(11), pages 4014-4024.
    8. Afonso, António & Furceri, Davide & Gomes, Pedro, 2012. "Sovereign credit ratings and financial markets linkages: Application to European data," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 31(3), pages 606-638.
    9. Delavane Diaz & Frances Moore, 2017. "Quantifying the economic risks of climate change," Nature Climate Change, Nature, vol. 7(11), pages 774-782, November.
    10. Robert S. Pindyck, 2013. "Climate Change Policy: What Do the Models Tell Us?," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 51(3), pages 860-872, September.
    11. Van Gestel, Tony & Martens, David & Baesens, Bart & Feremans, Daniel & Huysmans, Johan & Vanthienen, Jan, 2007. "Forecasting and analyzing insurance companies' ratings," International Journal of Forecasting, Elsevier, vol. 23(3), pages 513-529.
    12. Viral Acharya & Itamar Drechsler & Philipp Schnabl, 2014. "A Pyrrhic Victory? Bank Bailouts and Sovereign Credit Risk," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 69(6), pages 2689-2739, December.
    13. Serhan Cevik & João Tovar Jalles, 2022. "An Apocalypse Foretold: Climate Shocks and Sovereign Defaults," Open Economies Review, Springer, vol. 33(1), pages 89-108, February.
    14. Nicola Gennaioli & Alberto Martin & Stefano Rossi, 2014. "Sovereign Default, Domestic Banks, and Financial Institutions," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 69(2), pages 819-866, April.
    15. Brooks, Robert & Faff, Robert W. & Hillier, David & Hillier, Joseph, 2004. "The national market impact of sovereign rating changes," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 28(1), pages 233-250, January.
    16. Mr. Serhan Cevik & João Tovar Jalles, 2020. "This Changes Everything: Climate Shocks and Sovereign Bonds," IMF Working Papers 2020/079, International Monetary Fund.
    17. Dietz, Simon & Stern, Nicholas, 2015. "Endogenous growth, convexity of damage and climate risk: how Nordhaus’ framework supports deep cuts in carbon emissions," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 58406, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
    18. Painter, Marcus, 2020. "An inconvenient cost: The effects of climate change on municipal bonds," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 135(2), pages 468-482.
    19. Melissa Dell & Benjamin F. Jones & Benjamin A. Olken, 2014. "What Do We Learn from the Weather? The New Climate-Economy Literature," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 52(3), pages 740-798, September.
    20. Beirne, John & Renzhi, Nuobu & Volz, Ulrich, 2021. "Feeling the heat: Climate risks and the cost of sovereign borrowing," International Review of Economics & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 76(C), pages 920-936.
    21. Gande, Amar & Parsley, David C., 2005. "News spillovers in the sovereign debt market," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 75(3), pages 691-734, March.
    22. Serhan Cevik & João Tovar Jalles, 2023. "Feeling the Heat: Climate Shocks and Credit Ratings," Review of Development Finance Journal, Chartered Institute of Development Finance, vol. 13(2), pages 21-34.
    23. Heitor Almeida & Igor Cunha & Miguel A. Ferreira & Felipe Restrepo, 2017. "The Real Effects of Credit Ratings: The Sovereign Ceiling Channel," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 72(1), pages 249-290, February.
    24. Melissa Dell & Benjamin F. Jones & Benjamin A. Olken, 2012. "Temperature Shocks and Economic Growth: Evidence from the Last Half Century," American Economic Journal: Macroeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 4(3), pages 66-95, July.
    25. Gunther Capelle-Blancard & Patricia Crifo & Marc-Arthur Diaye & Rim Oueghlissi & Bert Scholtens, 2016. "Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) performance and sovereign bond spreads: an empirical analysis of OECD countries," Working Papers hal-01401718, HAL.
    26. Katharine Ricke & Laurent Drouet & Ken Caldeira & Massimo Tavoni, 2018. "Country-level social cost of carbon," Nature Climate Change, Nature, vol. 8(10), pages 895-900, October.
    27. Editorial, 2020. "Covid-19 and Climate Change," Journal, Review of Agrarian Studies, vol. 10(1), pages 5-6, January-J.
    28. Tanya Fiedler & Andy J. Pitman & Kate Mackenzie & Nick Wood & Christian Jakob & Sarah E. Perkins-Kirkpatrick, 2021. "Business risk and the emergence of climate analytics," Nature Climate Change, Nature, vol. 11(2), pages 87-94, February.
    29. Karl Mathiesen, 2018. "Rating climate risks to credit worthiness," Nature Climate Change, Nature, vol. 8(6), pages 454-456, June.
    30. De Moor, Lieven & Luitel, Prabesh & Sercu, Piet & Vanpée, Rosanne, 2018. "Subjectivity in sovereign credit ratings," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 88(C), pages 366-392.
    31. Fioramanti, Marco, 2008. "Predicting sovereign debt crises using artificial neural networks: A comparative approach," Journal of Financial Stability, Elsevier, vol. 4(2), pages 149-164, June.
    32. Simon Dietz & Nicholas Stern, 2015. "Endogenous Growth, Convexity of Damage and Climate Risk: How Nordhaus' Framework Supports Deep Cuts in Carbon Emissions," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 0(583), pages 574-620, March.
    33. Ozturk, Huseyin & Namli, Ersin & Erdal, Halil Ibrahim, 2016. "Modelling sovereign credit ratings: The accuracy of models in a heterogeneous sample," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 54(C), pages 469-478.
    34. Dietz, Simon & Bowen, Alex & Dixon, Charlie & Gradwell, Philip, 2016. "Climate value at risk of global financial assets," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 66226, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
    35. Constantin Mellios & Eric Paget-Blanc, 2006. "Which factors determine sovereign credit ratings?," The European Journal of Finance, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 12(4), pages 361-377.
    36. Schneider,Friedrich & Enste,Dominik H., 2016. "The Shadow Economy," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9781316600894.
    37. Maximilian Auffhammer, 2018. "Quantifying Economic Damages from Climate Change," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 32(4), pages 33-52, Fall.
    38. Patrick Augustin & Hamid Boustanifar & Johannes Breckenfelder & Jan Schnitzler, 2018. "Sovereign to Corporate Risk Spillovers," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 50(5), pages 857-891, August.
    39. Jess N. Cornaggia & Kimberly J. Cornaggia & John E. Hund, 2017. "Credit Ratings Across Asset Classes: A Long-Term Perspective," Review of Finance, European Finance Association, vol. 21(2), pages 465-509.
    40. Cameron Hepburn & Brian O’Callaghan & Nicholas Stern & Joseph Stiglitz & Dimitri Zenghelis, 2020. "Will COVID-19 fiscal recovery packages accelerate or retard progress on climate change?," Oxford Review of Economic Policy, Oxford University Press and Oxford Review of Economic Policy Limited, vol. 36(Supplemen), pages 359-381.
    41. Maximilian Kotz & Leonie Wenz & Annika Stechemesser & Matthias Kalkuhl & Anders Levermann, 2021. "Day-to-day temperature variability reduces economic growth," Nature Climate Change, Nature, vol. 11(4), pages 319-325, April.
    42. Cameron Hepburn & Brian O’Callaghan & Nicholas Stern & Joseph Stiglitz & Dimitri Zenghelis, 0. "Will COVID-19 fiscal recovery packages accelerate or retard progress on climate change?," Oxford Review of Economic Policy, Oxford University Press, vol. 36(Supplemen), pages 359-381.
    43. Markellos, Raphael N. & Psychoyios, Dimitris & Schneider, Friedrich, 2016. "Sovereign debt markets in light of the shadow economy," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 252(1), pages 220-231.
    44. Hannah Nissan & Lisa Goddard & Erin Coughlan de Perez & John Furlow & Walter Baethgen & Madeleine C. Thomson & Simon J. Mason, 2019. "On the use and misuse of climate change projections in international development," Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews: Climate Change, John Wiley & Sons, vol. 10(3), May.
    45. Richard Cantor & Frank Packer, 1996. "Determinants and impact of sovereign credit ratings," Economic Policy Review, Federal Reserve Bank of New York, vol. 2(Oct), pages 37-53.
    46. Nicholas Stern, 2008. "The Economics of Climate Change," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 98(2), pages 1-37, May.
    47. Manuel Adelino & Miguel A. Ferreira, 2016. "Bank Ratings and Lending Supply: Evidence from Sovereign Downgrades," The Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 29(7), pages 1709-1746.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. Julia Anna Bingler, 2022. "Expect the worst, hope for the best: The valuation of climate risks and opportunities in sovereign bonds," CER-ETH Economics working paper series 22/371, CER-ETH - Center of Economic Research (CER-ETH) at ETH Zurich.
    2. Agarwala, Matthew & Burke, Matt & Klusak, Patrycja & Mohaddes, Kamiar & Volz, Ulrich & Zenghelis, Dimitri, 2021. "Climate Change And Fiscal Sustainability: Risks And Opportunities," National Institute Economic Review, National Institute of Economic and Social Research, vol. 258, pages 28-46, November.
    3. Kamiar Mohaddes & Ryan N C Ng & M Hashem Pesaran & Mehdi Raissi & Jui-Chung Yang, 2023. "Climate change and economic activity: evidence from US states," Oxford Open Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 2, pages 28-46.
    4. John Beirne & Nuobu Renzhi & Ulrich Volz, 2021. "Bracing for the Typhoon: Climate change and sovereign risk in Southeast Asia," Sustainable Development, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 29(3), pages 537-551, May.
    5. Andrea Consiglio & Akis Kikas & Odysseas P. Michaelides & Stavros A. Zenios, 2024. "Auditing Public Debt Using Risk Management," Interfaces, INFORMS, vol. 54(2), pages 103-126, March.
    6. Andrés Alonso-Robisco & José Manuel Carbó & José Manuel Marqués, 2023. "Machine Learning methods in climate finance: a systematic review," Working Papers 2310, Banco de España.
    7. Raphael Semet & Thierry Roncalli & Lauren Stagnol, 2021. "ESG and Sovereign Risk: What is Priced in by the Bond Market and Credit Rating Agencies?," Papers 2110.06617, arXiv.org.
    8. Matthew Agarwala & Matt Burke & Patrycja Klusak & Kamiar Mohaddes & Ulrich Volz & Dimitri Zenghelis, 2021. "Climate Change and Fiscal Responsibility: Risks and Opportunities," Working Papers 008, The Productivity Institute.
    9. Jorge M. Uribe, 2023. ""Fiscal crises and climate change"," IREA Working Papers 202303, University of Barcelona, Research Institute of Applied Economics, revised Feb 2023.
    10. Stavros A. Zenios, 2022. "The risks from climate change to sovereign debt," Climatic Change, Springer, vol. 172(3), pages 1-19, June.
    11. Karydas, Christos & Xepapadeas, Anastasios, 2022. "Climate change financial risks: Implications for asset pricing and interest rates," Journal of Financial Stability, Elsevier, vol. 63(C).
    12. Denitsa Angelova & Francesco Bosello & Andrea Bigano & Silvio Giove, 2021. "Sovereign rating methodologies, ESG and climate change risk: an overview," Working Papers 2021:15, Department of Economics, University of Venice "Ca' Foscari".

    Most related items

    These are the items that most often cite the same works as this one and are cited by the same works as this one.
    1. Agarwala, Matthew & Burke, Matt & Klusak, Patrycja & Mohaddes, Kamiar & Volz, Ulrich & Zenghelis, Dimitri, 2021. "Climate Change And Fiscal Sustainability: Risks And Opportunities," National Institute Economic Review, National Institute of Economic and Social Research, vol. 258, pages 28-46, November.
    2. Matthew Agarwala & Matt Burke & Patrycja Klusak & Kamiar Mohaddes & Ulrich Volz & Dimitri Zenghelis, 2021. "Climate Change and Fiscal Responsibility: Risks and Opportunities," Working Papers 008, The Productivity Institute.
    3. Matthew Agarwala & Matt Burke & Jennifer Doherty-Bigara & Patrycja Klusak & Kamiar Mohaddes, 2024. "Climate Change and Sovereign Risk: A Regional Analysis for the Caribbean," CAMA Working Papers 2024-26, Centre for Applied Macroeconomic Analysis, Crawford School of Public Policy, The Australian National University.
    4. Kalkuhl, Matthias & Wenz, Leonie, 2020. "The impact of climate conditions on economic production. Evidence from a global panel of regions," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 103(C).
    5. Rising, James A. & Taylor, Charlotte & Ives, Matthew C. & Ward, Robert E.t., 2022. "Challenges and innovations in the economic evaluation of the risks of climate change," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 114941, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
    6. Rising, James A. & Taylor, Charlotte & Ives, Matthew C. & Ward, Robert E.T., 2022. "Challenges and innovations in the economic evaluation of the risks of climate change," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 197(C).
    7. Chang, Jun-Jie & Mi, Zhifu & Wei, Yi-Ming, 2023. "Temperature and GDP: A review of climate econometrics analysis," Structural Change and Economic Dynamics, Elsevier, vol. 66(C), pages 383-392.
    8. Cuadros-Solas, Pedro Jesús & Salvador Muñoz, Carlos, 2022. "Disentangling the sources of sovereign rating adjustments: An examination of changes in rating policies following the GFC," Research in International Business and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 59(C).
    9. Sahibzada, Irfan Ullah & Rizwan, Muhammad Suhail & Qureshi, Anum, 2022. "Impact of sovereign credit ratings on systemic risk and the moderating role of regulatory reforms: An international investigation," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 145(C).
    10. Rosati, Nicoletta & Bellia, Mario & Matos, Pedro Verga & Oliveira, Vasco, 2020. "Ratings matter: Announcements in times of crisis and the dynamics of stock markets," Journal of International Financial Markets, Institutions and Money, Elsevier, vol. 64(C).
    11. Schultes, Anselm & Piontek, Franziska & Soergel, Bjoern & Rogelj, Joeri & Baumstark, Lavinia & Kriegler, Elmar & Edenhofer, Ottmar & Luderer, Gunnar, 2020. "Economic damages from on-going climate change imply deeper near-term emission cuts," MPRA Paper 103655, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    12. Gregory Casey & Stephie Fried & Ethan Goode, 2023. "Projecting the Impact of Rising Temperatures: The Role of Macroeconomic Dynamics," IMF Economic Review, Palgrave Macmillan;International Monetary Fund, vol. 71(3), pages 688-718, September.
    13. Zoran Ivanovic & Sinisa Bogdan & Suzana Baresa, 2015. "Modeling and Estimating Shadow Sovereign Ratings," Contemporary Economics, University of Economics and Human Sciences in Warsaw., vol. 9(3), September.
    14. To, Thomas Y. & Wu, Eliza & Zhang, Lambert, 2022. "Mind the sovereign ceiling on corporate performance," Journal of Corporate Finance, Elsevier, vol. 75(C).
    15. Richard S J Tol, 2018. "The Economic Impacts of Climate Change," Review of Environmental Economics and Policy, Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 12(1), pages 4-25.
    16. Hill, Paula & Bissoondoyal-Bheenick, Emawtee & Faff, Robert, 2018. "New evidence on sovereign to corporate credit rating spill-overs," International Review of Financial Analysis, Elsevier, vol. 55(C), pages 209-225.
    17. Abad, Pilar & Alsakka, Rasha & ap Gwilym, Owain, 2018. "The influence of rating levels and rating convergence on the spillover effects of sovereign credit actions," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 85(C), pages 40-57.
    18. Sahibzada, Irfan Ullah, 2023. "To what extent do sovereign rating actions affect global equity market sectors?," International Review of Economics & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 84(C), pages 240-261.
    19. Franziska Piontek & Matthias Kalkuhl & Elmar Kriegler & Anselm Schultes & Marian Leimbach & Ottmar Edenhofer & Nico Bauer, 2019. "Economic Growth Effects of Alternative Climate Change Impact Channels in Economic Modeling," Environmental & Resource Economics, Springer;European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 73(4), pages 1357-1385, August.
    20. Yongyang Cai & William Brock & Anastasios Xepapadeas, 2023. "Climate Change Impact on Economic Growth: Regional Climate Policy under Cooperation and Noncooperation," Journal of the Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, University of Chicago Press, vol. 10(3), pages 569-605.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Sovereign credit rating; climate change; counterfactual analysis; climate-economy models; corporate debt; sovereign debt;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • C33 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Multiple or Simultaneous Equation Models; Multiple Variables - - - Models with Panel Data; Spatio-temporal Models
    • C53 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric Modeling - - - Forecasting and Prediction Models; Simulation Methods
    • G10 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - General (includes Measurement and Data)
    • G18 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Government Policy and Regulation
    • H63 - Public Economics - - National Budget, Deficit, and Debt - - - Debt; Debt Management; Sovereign Debt
    • O44 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity - - - Environment and Growth
    • Q51 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Valuation of Environmental Effects
    • Q54 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Climate; Natural Disasters and their Management; Global Warming

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:een:camaaa:2021-34. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a bibliographic reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: Cama Admin (email available below). General contact details of provider: https://edirc.repec.org/data/asanuau.html .

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service. RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.