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International Financial Contagion and the IMF: A Theoretical Framework

  • Peter B. Clark
  • Haizhou Huang

We provide a model of contagion where countries borrow or lend for consumption smoothing at the market interest rate or a lower IMF rate. Highly indebted countries hit by large negative shocks to output will default. The resulting reduction in loanable funds raises interest rates, increases the vulnerability of other indebted countries, and can generate further rounds of defaults. In this environment the IMF can limit default and internalize the externality generated by contagion through its lending with conditionality. We characterize the IMF's optimal lending decision in mitigating the loss in world consumption.

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Paper provided by International Monetary Fund in its series IMF Working Papers with number 01/137.

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Length: 31
Date of creation: 01 Sep 2001
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:imf:imfwpa:01/137
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  1. Kletzer, Kenneth M. & Wright, Brian D., 1998. "Sovereign Debt as Intertemporal Barter," Center for International and Development Economics Research, Working Paper Series qt4qg3c42v, Center for International and Development Economics Research, Institute for Business and Economic Research, UC Berkeley.
  2. Bengt Holmstrom & Jean Tirole, 1996. "Private and Public Supply of Liquidity," NBER Working Papers 5817, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  4. Olivier Jeanne & Jeromin Zettelmeyer, 2001. "International bailouts, moral hazard and conditionality," Economic Policy, CEPR;CES;MSH, vol. 16(33), pages 407-432, October.
  5. Haizhou Huang, 2000. "Financial Institutions, Financial Contagion, and Financial Crises," Econometric Society World Congress 2000 Contributed Papers 1595, Econometric Society.
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  7. Manmohan S. Kumar & Paul R. Masson & Marcus Miller, 2000. "Global Financial Crises: Institutions and Incentives," IMF Working Papers 00/105, International Monetary Fund.
  8. Diamond, Douglas W, 1984. "Financial Intermediation and Delegated Monitoring," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 51(3), pages 393-414, July.
  9. Marchesi, Silvia & Thomas, Jonathan P, 1999. "IMF Conditionality as a Screening Device," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 109(454), pages C111-25, March.
  10. Michael Mussa & Morris Goldstein, 1993. "The integration of world capital markets," Proceedings - Economic Policy Symposium - Jackson Hole, Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City, pages 245-330.
  11. Miller, Marcus & Zhang, Lei, 1998. "Sovereign Liquidity Crises: the Strategic Case for a Payments Standstill," CEPR Discussion Papers 1820, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  12. Michael Mussa, 1999. "Reforming the International Financial Architecture: Limiting Moral Hazard and Containing Real Hazard," RBA Annual Conference Volume, in: David Gruen & Luke Gower (ed.), Capital Flows and the International Financial System Reserve Bank of Australia.
  13. Haizhou Huang & C. A. E. Goodhart, 2000. "A Simple Model of An International Lender of Last Resort," IMF Working Papers 00/75, International Monetary Fund.
  14. Franklin Allen & Douglas Gale, 1998. "Financial Contagion Journal of Political Economy," Center for Financial Institutions Working Papers 98-31, Wharton School Center for Financial Institutions, University of Pennsylvania.
  15. C. A. E. Goodhart & H. Huang, 2000. "A Simple Model of an International Lender of Last Resort," Economic Notes, Banca Monte dei Paschi di Siena SpA, vol. 29(1), pages 1-11, 02.
  16. International Monetary Fund, 1998. "Do IMF-Supported Programs Work? A Survey of the Cross-Country Empirical Evidence," IMF Working Papers 98/169, International Monetary Fund.
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