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Phoenix Miracles in Emerging Markets: Recovering without Credit from Systemic Financial Crises

  • Guillermo A. Calvo
  • Alejandro Izquierdo

    ()

  • Ernesto Talvi

Using a sample of emerging markets that are integrated into global bond markets, we analyze the collapse and recovery phase of output collapses that coincide with systemic sudden stops, defined as periods of skyrocketing aggregate bond spreads and large capital flow reversals. Our findings indicate the presence of a very similar pattern across different episodes: output recovers with virtually no recovery in either domestic or foreign credit, a phenomenon that we call a Phoenix Miracle, where output rises from its ashes, suggesting that firms go through a process of financial engineering to restore liquidity outside formal credit markets. Moreover, we show that the U. S. Great Depression could be catalogued as a Phoenix Miracle. However, in contrast to the U. S. Great Depression, EM output collapses occur in a context of accelerating price inflation and falling real wages, casting doubt on price deflation and nominal wage rigidity as key elements in explaining output collapse, and suggesting that financial factors figure prominently in these collapses.

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Paper provided by Inter-American Development Bank, Research Department in its series Research Department Publications with number 4474.

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Date of creation: Aug 2006
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Handle: RePEc:idb:wpaper:4474
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  1. Enrique G. Mendoza & Katherine A. Smith, 2002. "Margin Calls, Trading Costs, and Asset Prices in Emerging Markets: The Finanical Mechanics of the 'Sudden Stop' Phenomenon," NBER Working Papers 9286, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Guillermo A. Calvo & Alejandro Izquierdo & Luis Fernando Mejía, 2004. "On the Empirics of Sudden Stops: The Relevance of Balance-Sheet Effects," Research Department Publications 4367, Inter-American Development Bank, Research Department.
  3. Alejandro Izquierdo, 2002. "Sudden Stops, the Real Exchange Rate and Fiscal Sustainability in Argentina," The World Economy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 25(7), pages 903-923, 07.
  4. Valerie Cerra & Sweta Chaman Saxena, 2008. "Growth Dynamics: The Myth of Economic Recovery," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 98(1), pages 439-57, March.
  5. Frankel, Jeffrey & Cavallo, Eduardo, 2004. "Does Openness to Trade Make Countries More Vulnerable to Sudden Stops, or Less? Using Gravity to Establish Causality," Working Paper Series rwp04-038, Harvard University, John F. Kennedy School of Government.
  6. Bernanke, Ben S, 1995. "The Macroeconomics of the Great Depression: A Comparative Approach," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 27(1), pages 1-28, February.
  7. Alejandro Izquierdo & Ernesto Talvi & Guillermo A. Calvo, 2002. "Sudden Stops, the Real Exchange Rate and Fiscal Sustainability: Argentina's Lessons," Research Department Publications 4299, Inter-American Development Bank, Research Department.
  8. Guillermo A. Calvo & Ernesto Talvi, 2005. "Sudden Stop, Financial Factors and Economic Collpase in Latin America: Learning from Argentina and Chile," NBER Working Papers 11153, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. 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.
  10. Guillermo A. Calvo, 2005. "Emerging Capital Markets in Turmoil: Bad Luck or Bad Policy?," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262033348, June.
  11. Calvo, Guillermo A. & Izquierdo, Alejandro & Loo-Kung, Rudy, 2006. "Relative price volatility under Sudden Stops: The relevance of balance sheet effects," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 69(1), pages 231-254, June.
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