IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/lev/wrkpap/wp_728.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Toward an Understanding of Crises Episodes in Latin America: A Post-Keynesian Approach

Author

Listed:
  • Esteban Perez Caldentey
  • Matias Vernengo

Abstract

Conventional wisdom about the business cycle in Latin America assumes that monetary shocks cause deviations from the optimal path, and that the triggering factor in the cycle is excess credit and liquidity. Further, in this view the origin of the contraction is ultimately related to the excesses during the expansion. For that reason, it follows that avoiding the worst conditions during the bust entails applying restrictive economic policies during the expansion, including restrictive fiscal and monetary policies. In this paper we develop an alternative approach that suggests that fiscal restraint may not have a significant impact in reducing the risks of a crisis, and that excessive fiscal conservatism might actually exacerbate problems. In the case of Central America, the efforts to reduce fiscal imbalances, in conjunction with the persistent current account deficits, implied that financial inflows, with remittances being particularly important in some cases, allowed for an expansion of a private spending boom that proved unsustainable once the Great Recession led to a sharp fall in external funds. In the case of South America, the commodity boom created conditions for growth without hitting the external constraint. Fiscal restraint in the South American context has resulted, in some cases, in lower rates of growth than what otherwise would have been possible as a result of the absence of an external constraint. Yet the lower reliance on external funds made South American countries less vulnerable to the external shock waves of the Great Recession than Central American economies.

Suggested Citation

  • Esteban Perez Caldentey & Matias Vernengo, 2012. "Toward an Understanding of Crises Episodes in Latin America: A Post-Keynesian Approach," Economics Working Paper Archive wp_728, Levy Economics Institute.
  • Handle: RePEc:lev:wrkpap:wp_728
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.levyinstitute.org/pubs/wp_728.pdf
    Download Restriction: no

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Graciela L. Kaminsky & Carmen M. Reinhart & Carlos A. Végh, 2005. "When It Rains, It Pours: Procyclical Capital Flows and Macroeconomic Policies," NBER Chapters,in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 2004, Volume 19, pages 11-82 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Marco Terrones & Enrique G. Mendoza, 2008. "An Anatomy of Credit Booms; Evidence From Macro Aggregates and Micro Data," IMF Working Papers 08/226, International Monetary Fund.
    3. Guillermo A. Calvo & Alejandro Izquierdo & Luis-Fernando Mejía, 2004. "On the empirics of Sudden Stops: the relevance of balance-sheet effects," Proceedings, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, issue Jun.
    4. Pérez Caldentey, Esteban & Vernengo, Matías, 2011. "Understanding the business cycle in Latin America: Prebisch's contributions," Estudios y Perspectivas – Sede Subregional de la CEPAL en México 127, Naciones Unidas Comisión Económica para América Latina y el Caribe (CEPAL).
    5. Esteban Pérez Caldentey & Matías Vernengo, 2010. "Back to the future: Latin America's current development strategy," Journal of Post Keynesian Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 32(4), pages 623-644, July.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Business Fluctuations; Great Recession; Latin America;

    JEL classification:

    • E32 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - Business Fluctuations; Cycles
    • E65 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook - - - Studies of Particular Policy Episodes
    • O54 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economywide Country Studies - - - Latin America; Caribbean

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:lev:wrkpap:wp_728. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Elizabeth Dunn). General contact details of provider: http://www.levyinstitute.org .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.