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Phoenix Miracles in Emerging Markets: Recovering without Credit from Systemic Financial Crises

  • Guillermo A. Calvo
  • Alejandro Izquierdo
  • Ernesto Talvi

Using a sample of emerging markets that are integrated into global bond markets, we analyze the collapse and recovery phase of output collapses that coincide with systemic sudden stops, defined as periods of skyrocketing aggregate bond spreads and large capital flow reversals. Our findings indicate the presence of a very similar pattern across different episodes: output recovers with virtually no recovery in either domestic or foreign credit, a phenomenon that we call Phoenix Miracle, where output %u201Crises from its ashes%u201D, suggesting that firms go through a process of financial engineering to restore liquidity outside the formal credit markets. Moreover, we show that the US Great Depression could be catalogued as a Phoenix Miracle. However, in contrast to the US Great Depression, EM output collapses occur in a context of accelerating price inflation and falling real wages, casting doubts on price deflation and nominal wage rigidity as key elements in explaining output collapse, and suggesting that financial factors are prominent for understanding these collapses.

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Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 12101.

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Date of creation: Mar 2006
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Publication status: published as Guillermo A. Calvo & Alejandro Izquierdo & Ernesto Talvi, 2006. "Sudden Stops and Phoenix Miracles in Emerging Markets," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 96(2), pages 405-410, May.
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:12101
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  1. Alejandro Izquierdo, 2002. "Sudden Stops, the Real Exchange Rate and Fiscal Sustainability in Argentina," The World Economy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 25(7), pages 903-923, 07.
  2. Guillermo A. Calvo & Alejandro Izquierdo & Luis Fernando Mejía, 2004. "On the Empirics of Sudden Stops: The Relevance of Balance-Sheet Effects," Research Department Publications 4367, Inter-American Development Bank, Research Department.
  3. Valerie Cerra & Sweta Chaman Saxena, 2007. "Growth dynamics: the myth of economic recovery," BIS Working Papers 226, Bank for International Settlements.
  4. Guillermo A. Calvo & Alejandro Izquierdo & Ernesto Talvi, 2003. "Sudden Stops, the Real Exchange Rate, and Fiscal Sustainability: Argentina's Lessons," NBER Working Papers 9828, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Jeffrey A. Frankel & Eduardo A. Cavallo, 2004. "Does Openness to Trade Make Countries More Vulnerable to Sudden Stops, Or Less? Using Gravity to Establish Causality," NBER Working Papers 10957, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Harold L. Cole & Lee E. Ohanian, 1999. "The Great Depression in the United States from a neoclassical perspective," Quarterly Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis, issue Win, pages 2-24.
  7. Guillermo A. Calvo & Alejandro Izquierdo & Rudy Loo-Kung, 2005. "Relative Price Volatility Under Sudden Stops: The Relevance of Balance Sheet Effects," NBER Working Papers 11492, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Guillermo A. Calvo & Ernesto Talvi, 2005. "Sudden Stop, Financial Factors and Economic Collpase in Latin America: Learning from Argentina and Chile," NBER Working Papers 11153, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Guillermo A. Calvo, 2005. "Emerging Capital Markets in Turmoil: Bad Luck or Bad Policy?," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262033348, June.
  10. Ben S. Bernanke, 1994. "The Macroeconomics of the Great Depression: A Comparative Approach," NBER Working Papers 4814, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. Enrique G. Mendoza & Katherine A. Smith, 2002. "Margin Calls, Trading Costs, and Asset Prices in Emerging Markets: The Finanical Mechanics of the 'Sudden Stop' Phenomenon," NBER Working Papers 9286, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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