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What can we learn from the current crisis in Argentina?

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  • Timothy J. Kehoe

Abstract

Currently, Argentina is experiencing what the government describes as a "great depression." Using the "Great Depressions" methodology developed by Cole and Ohanian (1999) and Kehoe and Prescott (2002), we find that the primary determinants of both the boom in Argentina in the 1990s and the subsequent depression were changes in productivity, rather than changes in factor inputs. The timing of events links the boom to the currency-board-like Convertibility Plan and the crisis to its collapse. To gain credibility, the Argentine government took measures to make abandoning the plan more costly. Because the government was unable to enforce fiscal discipline, however, these increased costs failed to make the plan more credible and instead made the crisis far worse when it failed.

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  • Timothy J. Kehoe, 2003. "What can we learn from the current crisis in Argentina?," Staff Report 318, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  • Handle: RePEc:fip:fedmsr:318
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Lucas, Robert E, Jr & Prescott, Edward C, 1971. "Investment Under Uncertainty," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 39(5), pages 659-681, September.
    2. Kenneth Rogoff, 1985. "The Optimal Degree of Commitment to an Intermediate Monetary Target," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 100(4), pages 1169-1189.
    3. Betts, Caroline M. & Kehoe, Timothy J., 2006. "U.S. real exchange rate fluctuations and relative price fluctuations," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 53(7), pages 1297-1326, October.
    4. Charles Engel, 1999. "Accounting for U.S. Real Exchange Rate Changes," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 107(3), pages 507-538, June.
    5. V. V Chari & Patrick J. Kehoe & Ellen R. McGrattan, 2002. "Can Sticky Price Models Generate Volatile and Persistent Real Exchange Rates?," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 69(3), pages 533-563.
    6. King, Robert G. & Rebelo, Sergio T., 1999. "Resuscitating real business cycles," Handbook of Macroeconomics,in: J. B. Taylor & M. Woodford (ed.), Handbook of Macroeconomics, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 14, pages 927-1007 Elsevier.
    7. Douglas Gollin, 2002. "Getting Income Shares Right," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 110(2), pages 458-474, April.
    8. de Cordoba, Gonzalo Fernandez & Kehoe, Timothy J., 2000. "Capital flows and real exchange rate fluctuations following Spain's entry into the European Community," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 51(1), pages 49-78, June.
    9. Prescott, Edward C, 1998. "Needed: A Theory of Total Factor Productivity," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 39(3), pages 525-551, August.
    10. Harold L. Cole & Timothy J. Kehoe, 2000. "Self-Fulfilling Debt Crises," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 67(1), pages 91-116.
    11. Harold L. Cole & Lee E. Ohanian, 1999. "The Great Depression in the United States from a neoclassical perspective," Quarterly Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis, issue Win, pages 2-24.
    12. Guillermo A. Calvo & Alejandro Izquierdo & Ernesto Talvi, 2002. "Sudden Stops, the Real Exchange Rate and Fiscal Sustainability: Argentina's Lessons," IDB Publications (Working Papers) 1909, Inter-American Development Bank.
    13. Timothy J. Kehoe & Edward C. Prescott, 2002. "Great Depressions of the Twentieth Century," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 5(1), pages 1-18, January.
    14. Betts, Caroline & Devereux, Michael B., 2000. "Exchange rate dynamics in a model of pricing-to-market," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 50(1), pages 215-244, February.
    15. Timothy J. Kehoe & Edward C. Prescott(), 2007. "Great depressions of the twentieth century," Monograph, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis, number 2007gdott.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Campos, Nauro F & Karanasos, Menelaos & Tan, Bin, 2008. "Two to Tangle: Financial Development, Political Instability and Economic Growth in Argentina (1896-2000)," CEPR Discussion Papers 7004, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    2. Pratap, Sangeeta & Quintin, Erwan, 2011. "Financial crises and labor market turbulence," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 58(6), pages 601-615.
    3. Meza, Felipe & Benjamin, David, 2006. "Productivity in economies with financial frictions: facts and a theory," Discussion Paper Series In Economics And Econometrics 613, Economics Division, School of Social Sciences, University of Southampton.
    4. Çiçek, Deniz & Elgin, Ceyhun, 2011. "Not-quite-great depressions of Turkey: A quantitative analysis of economic growth over 1968–2004," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 28(6), pages 2691-2700.
    5. Jérôme Sgard, 2004. "Ce qu’on en dit après : le « currency board » argentin et sa fin tragique," Revue d'Économie Financière, Programme National Persée, vol. 75(2), pages 129-151.
    6. repec:spo:wpecon:info:hdl:2441/6827 is not listed on IDEAS
    7. Campos, Nauro F & Karanasos, Menelaos G. & Tan, Bin, 2014. "From Riches to Rags, and Back? Institutional Change, Financial Development and Economic Growth in Argentina since the 1890s," IZA Discussion Papers 8654, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    8. Orlando Gracia & Hernando Zuleta, 2009. "Tratado de Libre Comercio entre Colombia y Estados Unidos: ¿Que? impacto puede tener en Colombia?," COYUNTURA ECONÓMICA, FEDESARROLLO, June.
    9. Minetti, Raoul & Peng, Tao, 2013. "Lending constraints, real estate prices and business cycles in emerging economies," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 37(12), pages 2397-2416.
    10. Jérôme Sgard, 2004. "Ce qu'on en dit après - le Currency Board argentin et sa fin tragique," Post-Print hal-01019663, HAL.
    11. Carlos Gustavo Machicado, 2007. "Macroeconomic and Welfare Effects of Public Infrastructure Investment in Five Latin American Countries," Development Research Working Paper Series 14/2007, Institute for Advanced Development Studies.
    12. Jérôme Sgard, 2004. "Ce qu'on en dit après - le Currency Board argentin et sa fin tragique," Sciences Po publications info:hdl:2441/6827, Sciences Po.
    13. Meza, Felipe & Benjamin, David, 2006. "Productivity in economies with financial frictions: facts and a theory," Discussion Paper Series In Economics And Econometrics 0613, Economics Division, School of Social Sciences, University of Southampton.
    14. Tasso Adamopoulos, 2008. "Land Inequality and the Transition to Modern Growth," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 11(2), pages 257-282, April.

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    Keywords

    Argentina ; Monetary policy - Argentina;

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