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Crisis Dynamics of Implied Default Recovery Ratios: Evidence From Russia and Argentina


  • John J. Merrick Jr.


The Russian GKO default crisis provides a unique window into the impact of changing default probabilities and recovery ratio assumptions on credit-sensitive sovereign bond prices. This paper introduces a joint implied parameter approach to extract both the expected recovery ratio and the default probability term structure. The methodology is applied to both Russian Federation and Republic of Argentina US dollar-denominated Eurobonds before and after the GKO crisis. For the Russian bonds, the sample paths suggest a two-phase revaluation. Shifts in default probabilities account for most of the initial price collapse. Marked decreases in the projected default recovery ratio dominate the continued Russian bond price declines. The "contagion effect" impact of the default crisis on the Argentine Eurobond market actually resembles the Russian case much more than the raw price data indicate. The crucial Argentine distinction is that investors never cut recovery value assumptions.

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  • John J. Merrick Jr., 1999. "Crisis Dynamics of Implied Default Recovery Ratios: Evidence From Russia and Argentina," New York University, Leonard N. Stern School Finance Department Working Paper Seires 99-052, New York University, Leonard N. Stern School of Business-.
  • Handle: RePEc:fth:nystfi:99-052

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Claessens, Stijn & Pennacchi, George, 1996. "Estimating the Likelihood of Mexican Default from the Market Prices of Brady Bonds," Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis, Cambridge University Press, vol. 31(01), pages 109-126, March.
    2. Robert A. Jarrow & David Lando & Stuart M. Turnbull, 2008. "A Markov Model for the Term Structure of Credit Risk Spreads," World Scientific Book Chapters,in: Financial Derivatives Pricing Selected Works of Robert Jarrow, chapter 18, pages 411-453 World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd..
    3. Bulow, Jeremy & Rogoff, Kenneth, 1989. "A Constant Recontracting Model of Sovereign Debt," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 97(1), pages 155-178, February.
    4. Leland, Hayne E & Toft, Klaus Bjerre, 1996. " Optimal Capital Structure, Endogenous Bankruptcy, and the Term Structure of Credit Spreads," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 51(3), pages 987-1019, July.
    5. Harrison, J. Michael & Kreps, David M., 1979. "Martingales and arbitrage in multiperiod securities markets," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 20(3), pages 381-408, June.
    6. Fons, Jerome S, 1987. " The Default Premium and Corporate Bond Experience," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 42(1), pages 81-97, March.
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    Cited by:

    1. Juan Jose Cruces & Marcos Buscaglia & Joaquin Alonso, 2002. "The Term Structure of Country Risk and Valuation in Emerging Markets," Working Papers 46, Universidad de San Andres, Departamento de Economia, revised Apr 2002.
    2. Clark, Ephraim & Lakshmi, Geeta, 2004. "Sovereign debt and the cost of migration: India 1990-1992," Journal of Asian Economics, Elsevier, vol. 15(1), pages 111-134, February.
    3. Ephraim Clark & Geeta Lakshmi, 2003. "Controlling the risk: a case study of the Indian liquidity crisis 1990-92," Journal of International Development, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 15(3), pages 285-298.
    4. Federico Sturzenegger, 2002. "Defaults in the 90´s: Factbook and Preliminary Lessons," Business School Working Papers veintidos, Universidad Torcuato Di Tella.

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