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Global Debt Database: Methodology and Sources

Author

Listed:
  • Samba Mbaye
  • Marialuz Moreno Badia
  • Kyungla Chae

Abstract

This paper describes the compilation of the Global Debt Database (GDD), a cutting-edge dataset covering private and public debt for virtually the entire world (190 countries) dating back to the 1950s. The GDD is the result of a multiyear investigative process that started with the October 2016 Fiscal Monitor, which pioneered the expansion of private debt series to a global sample. It differs from existing datasets in three major ways. First, it takes a fundamentally new approach to compiling historical data. Where most debt datasets either provide long series with a narrow and changing definition of debt or comprehensive debt concepts over a short period, the GDD adopts a multidimensional approach by offering multiple debt series with different coverages, thus ensuring consistency across time. Second, it more than doubles the cross-sectional dimension of existing private debt datasets. Finally, the integrity of the data has been checked through bilateral consultations with officials and IMF country desks of all countries in the sample, setting a higher data quality standard.

Suggested Citation

  • Samba Mbaye & Marialuz Moreno Badia & Kyungla Chae, 2018. "Global Debt Database: Methodology and Sources," IMF Working Papers 18/111, International Monetary Fund.
  • Handle: RePEc:imf:imfwpa:18/111
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    Cited by:

    1. Antonio Fatás & Atish R. Ghosh & Ugo Panizza & Andrea F Presbitero, 2019. "The Motives to Borrow," IMF Working Papers 19/101, International Monetary Fund.
    2. Eberhardt, Markus, 2018. "(At Least) Four Theories for Sovereign Default," CEPR Discussion Papers 13084, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.

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