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Macroeconomic Fluctuations in the Caribbean: The Role of Climatic and External Shocks

  • Sebastian Sosa
  • Paul Cashin

This paper develops country-specific VAR models with block exogeneity restrictions to analyze how exogenous factors affect business cycles in the Eastern Caribbean. It finds that external shocks play a key role, explaining more than half of macroeconomic fluctuations in the region. Domestic business cycles are especially vulnerable to changes in climatic conditions, with a natural disaster leading to an immediate and significant fall in output-but the effects do not appear to be persistent. Oil price and external demand shocks also contribute significantly to domestic macroeconomic fluctuations. An increase in oil prices (external demand) is contractionary (expansionary), and the effects dissipate up to three years after the shock.

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Paper provided by International Monetary Fund in its series IMF Working Papers with number 09/159.

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Length: 27
Date of creation: 01 Jul 2009
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:imf:imfwpa:09/159
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  1. Raddatz, Claudio, 2007. "Are external shocks responsible for the instability of output in low-income countries?," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 84(1), pages 155-187, September.
  2. Jeromin Zettelmeyer & Pär Österholm, 2007. "The Effect of External Conditions on Growth in Latin America," IMF Working Papers 07/176, International Monetary Fund.
  3. Guillermo A. Calvo & Leonardo Leiderman & Carmen M. Reinhart, 1993. "Capital Inflows and Real Exchange Rate Appreciation in Latin America: The Role of External Factors," IMF Staff Papers, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 40(1), pages 108-151, March.
  4. Tobias N. Rasmussen, 2004. "Macroeconomic Implications of Natural Disasters in the Caribbean," IMF Working Papers 04/224, International Monetary Fund.
  5. Robert A Buckle & Kunhong Kim & Heather Kirkham & Nathan McLellan & Jared Sharma, 2002. "A structural VAR model of the New Zealand business cycle," Treasury Working Paper Series 02/26, New Zealand Treasury.
  6. Guillermo A. Calvo & Eduardo Fernández-Arias & Ernesto Talvi & Carmen M. Reinhart, 2001. "The Growth-Interest Rate Cycle in the United States and its Consequences for Emerging Markets," IDB Publications (Working Papers) 6491, Inter-American Development Bank.
  7. James H. Stock & Mark W. Watson, 2001. "Vector Autoregressions," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 15(4), pages 101-115, Fall.
  8. Hoffmaister, Alexander W. & Roldos, Jorge E., 2001. "The Sources of Macroeconomic Fluctuations in Developing Countries: Brazil and Korea," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 23(2), pages 213-239, April.
  9. Allan D. Brunner, 2000. "El Nino and World Primary Commodity Prices: Warm Water or Hot Air?," IMF Working Papers 00/203, International Monetary Fund.
  10. Paul Cashin & Antonio Lemus, 2012. "The Eastern Caribbean Currency Union: Would a Fiscal Insurance Mechanism Mitigate National Income Shocks?," IMF Working Papers 12/17, International Monetary Fund.
  11. Dungey, Mardi & Pagan, Adrian, 2000. "A Structural VAR Model of the Australian Economy," The Economic Record, The Economic Society of Australia, vol. 76(235), pages 321-42, December.
  12. David O. Cushman & Tao Zha, 1995. "Identifying monetary policy in a small open economy under flexible exchange rates," FRB Atlanta Working Paper 95-7, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta.
  13. Paul Cashin, 2004. "Caribbean Business Cycles," IMF Working Papers 04/136, International Monetary Fund.
  14. Sims, Christopher A, 1980. "Macroeconomics and Reality," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 48(1), pages 1-48, January.
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