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An Equilibrium Model of "Global Imbalances" and Low Interest Rates

  • Caballero, Ricardo J.
  • Farhi, Emmanuel
  • Gourinchas, Pierre-Olivier

Three of the most important recent facts in global macroeconomics — the sustained rise in the US current account deficit, the stubborn decline in long run real rates, and the rise in the share of US assets in global portfolios — appear as anomalies from the perspective of conventional wisdom and models. Instead, in this paper we provide a model that rationalizes these facts as an equilibrium outcome stemming from the heterogenity in different regions of the world in their capacity to generate ï¬nancial assets from real investments. In extensions of the basic model, we also generate exchange rate and FDI excess returns which are broadly consistent with the recent trends in these variables. Beyond the specific sequence of events that motivate our analysis, the framework is flexible enough to shed light on a range of scenarios in a global equilibrium environment.

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Paper provided by Harvard University Department of Economics in its series Scholarly Articles with number 3229094.

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Date of creation: 2008
Date of revision:
Publication status: Published in American Economic Review
Handle: RePEc:hrv:faseco:3229094
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  1. Ricardo J. Caballero & Arvind Krishnamurthy, 2005. "Bubbles and Capital Flow Volatility: Causes and Risk Management," NBER Working Papers 11618, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Pierre-Olivier Gourinchas & Hélène Rey, 2007. "From World Banker to World Venture Capitalist: U.S. External Adjustment and the Exorbitant Privilege," NBER Chapters, in: G7 Current Account Imbalances: Sustainability and Adjustment, pages 11-66 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Ju, Jiandong & Wei, Shang-Jin, 2006. "A Solution to Two Paradoxes of International Capital Flows," CEPR Discussion Papers 5981, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  4. Menzie D. Chinn & Hiro Ito, 2005. "Current Account Balances, Financial Development and Institutions: Assaying the World "Savings Glut"," NBER Working Papers 11761, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Richard H. Clarida, 2007. "G7 Current Account Imbalances: Sustainability and Adjustment," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number clar06-2, December.
  6. Ricardo Caballero & Emmanuel Farhi & Mohamad L. Hammour, 2004. "Speculative Growth: Hints from the US Economy," NBER Working Papers 10518, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. repec:tcd:wpaper:tep16 is not listed on IDEAS
  8. Ricardo J. Caballero & Emmanuel Farhi & Pierre-Olivier Gourinchas, 2006. "An Equilibrium Model of Global Imbalances and Low Interest Rates," 2006 Meeting Papers 894, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  9. Cavallo, Eduardo A. & Frankel, Jeffrey A., 2008. "Does openness to trade make countries more vulnerable to sudden stops, or less? Using gravity to establish causality," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 27(8), pages 1430-1452, December.
  10. Richard N. Cooper, 2005. "Living with Global Imbalances: A Contrarian View," Policy Briefs PB05-03, Peterson Institute for International Economics.
  11. Olivier Blanchard & Francesco Giavazzi & Filipa Sa, 2005. "The U.S. Current Account and the Dollar," NBER Working Papers 11137, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  12. David E. Weinstein & Christian Broda, 2004. "Globalization And The Gains From Variety," Econometric Society 2004 Latin American Meetings 327, Econometric Society.
  13. Philip Lane & Gian Maria Milesi-Ferreti, 2005. "A Global Perspective on External Positions," Trinity Economics Papers tep16, Trinity College Dublin, Department of Economics.
  14. Chinn, Menzie & Frankel, Jeffrey, 2005. "Will the Euro Eventually Surpass the Dollar as Leading International Reserve Currency?," Working Paper Series rwp05-064, Harvard University, John F. Kennedy School of Government.
  15. Maurice Obstfeld & Kenneth S. Rogoff, 2005. "Global Current Account Imbalances and Exchange Rate Adjustments," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 36(1), pages 67-146.
  16. Soyoung Kim & Nouriel Roubini, 2004. "Twin Deficit or Twin Divergence? Fiscal Policy, Current Account, and Real Exchange Rate in the US," Econometric Society 2004 North American Winter Meetings 271, Econometric Society.
  17. Sebastian Edwards, 2005. "Is the U.S. Current Account Deficit Sustainable? And If Not, How Costly is Adjustment Likely To Be?," NBER Working Papers 11541, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  18. Michael P. Dooley & David Folkerts-Landau & Peter M. Garber, 2005. "An essay on the revived Bretton Woods system," Proceedings, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, issue Feb.
  19. Mendoza, Enrique G & Quadrini, Vincenzo & Ríos-Rull, José-Víctor, 2007. "Financial Integration, Financial Deepness and Global Imbalances," CEPR Discussion Papers 6149, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  20. Ben S. Bernanke, 2005. "The global saving glut and the U.S. current account deficit," Speech 77, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  21. Martin Feldstein, 2005. "Monetary Policy in a Changing International Environment: The Role of Global Capital Flows," NBER Working Papers 11856, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  22. Shang-Jin Wei & Jiandong Ju, 2006. "A Solution to Two Paradoxes of International Capital Flows," IMF Working Papers 06/178, International Monetary Fund.
  23. William R. Cline, 2005. "United States as a Debtor Nation, The," Peterson Institute Press: All Books, Peterson Institute for International Economics, number 3993.
  24. repec:fip:fedgsq:y:2005:i:mar10 is not listed on IDEAS
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