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Growth rates constrained by internal and external imbalances and the role of relative prices: Empirical evidence from Portugal

Author

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  • Elias Soukiazis

    () (Faculty of Economics, University of Coimbra and GEMF)

  • Pedro André Cerqueira

    () (Faculty of Economics, University of Coimbra and GEMF)

  • Micaela Antunes

    (Department of Economics, Business and Industrial Engineering)

Abstract

Thirlwall’s Law (Thirlwall 1979) considers that growth can be constrained by the balance-of-payments when the current account is in permanent deficit. The Law focuses on external imbalances as impediments to growth and does not consider the case where internal imbalances (budget deficits or public debt) can also constrain growth. The recent European public debt crisis shows that when internal imbalances are out of control they can constrain growth and domestic demand in a severe way. Recently, Soukiazis E., Cerqueira P., and Antunes M. (2012) developed a model – hereafter the SCA model - that takes into account both internal and external imbalances but where relative prices do not play any role on the pace of economic growth. The aim of this paper is to extend the SCA model by relaxing this assumption and introduce explicitly relative prices in it. The model is tested for Portugal which recently fell into a public debt crisis with serious negative consequences on growth. It is shown that our new model makes a significant improvement in predicting actual growth in Portugal. Our empirical analysis reveals that Portuguese growth is balance-of-payments constrained and that policies aiming at reducing external imbalances and changing the share of imports and exports towards trade equilibrium will help the economy to grow faster. Competitive devaluations and lower cost for financing the economy are also important stimulus to growth.

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  • Elias Soukiazis & Pedro André Cerqueira & Micaela Antunes, 2012. "Growth rates constrained by internal and external imbalances and the role of relative prices: Empirical evidence from Portugal," GEMF Working Papers 2012-08, GEMF, Faculty of Economics, University of Coimbra.
  • Handle: RePEc:gmf:wpaper:2012-08
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Elias Soukiazis & Micaela Antunes, 2011. "Application of the balance-of-payments-constrained growth model to Portugal, 1965-2008," Journal of Post Keynesian Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 34(2), pages 353-380.
    2. Juan Carlos Moreno-Brid, 1998. "On Capital Flows and The Balance-of-Payments-Constrained Growth Model," Journal of Post Keynesian Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 21(2), pages 283-298, December.
    3. Thirlwall, Anthony P & Hussain, Mohammed Nureldin, 1982. "The Balance of Payments Constraint, Capital Flows and Growth Rate Differences between Developing Countries," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 34(3), pages 498-510, November.
    4. Anthony P. Thirlwall, 2011. "The Balance of Payments Constraint as an Explanation of International Growth Rate Differences," PSL Quarterly Review, Economia civile, vol. 64(259), pages 429-438.
    5. Penélope López & A. Thirlwall, 2006. "Trade liberalization, the income elasticity of demand for imports, and growth in Latin America," Journal of Post Keynesian Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 29(1), pages 41-61.
    6. Nelson H. Barbosa-Filho, 2001. "The balance-of-payments constraint:from balanced trade to sustainable debt," BNL Quarterly Review, Banca Nazionale del Lavoro, vol. 54(219), pages 381-400.
    7. Soukiazis, Elias & Cerqueira, Pedro A. & Antunes, Micaela, 2012. "Modelling economic growth with internal and external imbalances: Empirical evidence from Portugal," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 29(2), pages 478-486.
    8. A. P. Thirlwall, 2007. "Regional Problems are "Balance-of-Payments" Problems," Regional Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 41(sup1), pages 89-95.
    9. Robert A. Blecker, 2009. "Long-Run Growth in Open Economies: Export-Led Cumulative Causation or a Balance-of-Payments Constraint?," Working Papers 2009-23, American University, Department of Economics.
    10. A. P. Thirlwall, 1982. "The Harrod Trade Multiplier And The Importance Of Export-Led Growth," Pakistan Journal of Applied Economics, Applied Economics Research Centre, vol. 1(1), pages 1-21.
    11. Juan Carlos Moreno-Brid, 1999. "On Capital Flows and the Balance-of-Payments-Constrained Growth Model," Journal of Post Keynesian Economics, M.E. Sharpe, Inc., vol. 21(2), pages 283-298, January.
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    Cited by:

    1. Elias Soukiazis & Micaela Antunes & Ioannis Kostakis, 2018. "The Greek economy under the twin-deficit pressure: a demand orientated growth approach," International Review of Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 32(2), pages 215-236, March.
    2. Kvedaras, Virmantas & Garcimartín, Carlos & Astudillo, Jhonatan, 2020. "Balance-of-Payments constrained growth dynamics: An empirical investigation," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 89(C), pages 232-244.
    3. Hiroshi Nishi, 2019. "Balance‐of‐payments‐constrained cyclical growth with distributive class conflicts and productivity dynamics," Metroeconomica, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 70(4), pages 620-640, November.
    4. Irfan Civcir & M. Emir Yücel, 2020. "Effects of Internal and External Imbalances and the Role of Relative Prices on Economic Growth: Evidence From Turkey," SAGE Open, , vol. 10(2), pages 21582440209, June.
    5. Elias Soukiazis & Eva Muchova & Pedro A. Cerqueira, 2014. "Is the Slovak Economy Doing Well? A Twin Deficit Growth Approach," GEMF Working Papers 2014-08, GEMF, Faculty of Economics, University of Coimbra.
    6. Soukiazis, Elias & Cerqueira, Pedro André & Antunes, Micaela, 2014. "Explaining Italy's economic growth: A balance-of-payments approach with internal and external imbalances and non-neutral relative prices," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 40(C), pages 334-341.
    7. Yohanna Panshak & Irfan Civcir & Hüseyin Ozdeser, 2019. "Technology Gap and the Role of National Innovation System in a Balance of Payments Constrained Growth Model: Empirical Evidence From Nigeria," SAGE Open, , vol. 9(1), pages 21582440198, February.
    8. Patrik Abrahámek, 2017. "Importance of the Debt-Adjusted Real Exchange Rate in the Eurozone and V4," Acta Universitatis Agriculturae et Silviculturae Mendelianae Brunensis, Mendel University Press, vol. 65(4), pages 1325-1337.
    9. Soukiazis, Soukiazis & Antunes, Micaela & Stoian, Andreea, 2015. "The effects of internal and external imbalances on Romanian’s economic growth," MPRA Paper 63558, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    10. Jeanete Dias & Micaela Antunes, 2015. "Applying Thirlwall’s Law to the Portuguese economy: a sectoral analysis," GEMF Working Papers 2015-20, GEMF, Faculty of Economics, University of Coimbra.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Internal and External Imbalances; Price and Income Elasticities of External Trade; Equilibrium Growth Rates; 3SLS System Regressions.;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • C32 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Multiple or Simultaneous Equation Models; Multiple Variables - - - Time-Series Models; Dynamic Quantile Regressions; Dynamic Treatment Effect Models; Diffusion Processes; State Space Models
    • E12 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - General Aggregative Models - - - Keynes; Keynesian; Post-Keynesian; Modern Monetary Theory
    • H6 - Public Economics - - National Budget, Deficit, and Debt
    • O4 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity

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