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Endogenous Financial and Trade Openness

  • Joshua Aizenman
  • Ilan Noy

This paper studies the endogenous determination of financial and trade openness. First, we outline a theoretical framework leading to two-way feedbacks between the different modes of openness; next, we identify these feedbacks empirically. We find that one standard deviation increase in commercial openness is associated with a 9.5 percent increase in de-facto financial openness (% of GDP), controlling for political economy and macroeconomic factors. Similarly, increase in de-facto financial openness has powerful effects on future trade openness. De-jure restrictions on capital mobility have only a weak impact on de-facto financial openness, while de-jure restrictions on the current account have large adverse effect on commercial openness. Having established (Granger) causality, we investigate the relative magnitudes of these directions of causality using Geweke's (1982) decomposition methodology. We find that almost all of the linear feedback between trade and financial openness can be accounted for by G-causality from financial openness to trade openness (53%) and from trade to financial openness (34%). We conclude that in an era of rapidly growing trade integration countries cannot choose financial openness independently of their degree of openness to trade. Dealing with greater exposure to financial turbulence by imposing restrictions on financial flows will likely be ineffectual.

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Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 10496.

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Date of creation: May 2004
Date of revision:
Publication status: published as Joshua Aizenman & Ilan Noy, 2009. "Endogenous Financial and Trade Openness," Review of Development Economics, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 13(2), pages 175-189, 05.
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:10496
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