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The EMU sovereign-debt crisis: Fundamentals, expectations and contagion

  • Michael G. Arghyrou
  • Alexandros Kontonikas

We offer a detailed empirical investigation of the European sovereign debt crisis based on the theoretical model by Arghyrou and Tsoukalas (2010). We find evidence of a marked shift in market pricing behaviour from a ‘convergence-trade’ model before August 2007 to one driven by macro-fundamentals and international risk thereafter. The majority of EMU countries have experienced contagion from Greece. There is no evidence of significant speculation effects originating from CDS markets. Finally, the escalation of the Greek debt crisis since November 2009 is confirmed as the result of an unfavourable shift in countryspecific market expectations. Our findings highlight the necessity of structural, competitiveness-inducing reforms in periphery EMU countries and institutional reforms at the EMU level enhancing intra-EMU economic monitoring and policy co-ordination.

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Paper provided by Business School - Economics, University of Glasgow in its series Working Papers with number 2010_25.

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Date of creation: Sep 2010
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Handle: RePEc:gla:glaewp:2010_25
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