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Country Portfolios

  • Aart Kraay
  • Norman Loayza
  • Luis Serven
  • Jaume Ventura

How do countries hold their financial wealth? We construct a new database of countries' claims on capital located at home and abroad, and international borrowing and lending, covering 68 countries from 1966 to 1997. We find that a small amount of capital flows from rich countries to poor countries. Countries' foreign asset positions are remarkably persistent, and mostly take the form of foreign loans rather than foreign equity. To interpret these facts, we build a simple model of international capital flows that highlights the interplay between diminishing returns, production risk and sovereign risk. We show that in the presence of reasonable diminishing returns and production risk, the probability that international crises occur twice a century is enough to generate a set of country portfolios that are roughly consistent with the data.

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Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 7795.

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Date of creation: Jul 2000
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Publication status: published as Aart Kraay & Norman Loayza & Luis Servén & Jaume Ventura, 2005. "Country Portfolios," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 3(4), pages 914-945, 06.
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:7795
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  1. repec:rus:hseeco:123922 is not listed on IDEAS
  2. Philip Lane & Gian Maria Milesi-Ferretti, 2001. "THE EXTERNAL WEALTH OF NATIONS: Measures of Foreign Assets and Liabilities For Industrial and Developing Countries," CEG Working Papers 20012, Trinity College Dublin, Department of Economics.
  3. Kraay, Aart & Ventura, Jaume, 1997. "Current accounts in debtor and creditor countries," Policy Research Working Paper Series 1825, The World Bank.
  4. Mark Rider, 1994. "External Debt and Liabilities of Industrial Countries," RBA Research Discussion Papers rdp9405, Reserve Bank of Australia.
  5. Aart Kraay & Norman Loayza & Luis Servén & Jaume Ventura, 2000. "Country portfolios," Economics Working Papers 913, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra.
  6. Albuquerque, Rui, 2003. "The composition of international capital flows: risk sharing through foreign direct investment," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 61(2), pages 353-383, December.
  7. Reinhart, Carmen & Rogoff, Kenneth & Savastano, Miguel, 2003. "Debt intolerance," MPRA Paper 13932, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  8. Robert E. Hall & Charles I. Jones, 1999. "Why do Some Countries Produce So Much More Output Per Worker than Others?," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 114(1), pages 83-116.
  9. Roberto Chang & Andrés Velasco, 2000. "Liquidity Crises in Emerging Markets: Theory and Policy," NBER Chapters, in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 1999, Volume 14, pages 11-78 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Eaton, Jonathan & Fernandez, Raquel, 1995. "Sovereign debt," Handbook of International Economics, in: G. M. Grossman & K. Rogoff (ed.), Handbook of International Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 3, pages 2031-2077 Elsevier.
  11. Maurice Obstfeld & Kenneth S. Rogoff, 1996. "Foundations of International Macroeconomics," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262150476.
  12. Bulow, J. & Rogoff, K., 1988. "Sovereign Debt: Is To Forgive To Forget?," Papers 411, Stockholm - International Economic Studies.
  13. Lane, Philip & Milesi-Ferretti, Gian Maria, . "External Wealth of Nations," Instructional Stata datasets for econometrics extwealth, Boston College Department of Economics.
  14. Kenneth R. French & James M. Poterba, 1991. "Investor Diversification and International Equity Markets," NBER Working Papers 3609, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  15. Feldstein, Martin & Horioka, Charles, 1980. "Domestic Saving and International Capital Flows," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 90(358), pages 314-29, June.
  16. Karen K. Lewis, 1999. "Trying to Explain Home Bias in Equities and Consumption," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 37(2), pages 571-608, June.
  17. Jonathan Eaton & Mark Gersovitz, 1981. "Debt with Potential Repudiation: Theoretical and Empirical Analysis," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 48(2), pages 289-309.
  18. Robert E. Hall & Charles I. Jones, 1999. "Why Do Some Countries Produce So Much More Output per Worker than Others?," NBER Working Papers 6564, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  19. Lucas, Robert E, Jr, 1990. "Why Doesn't Capital Flow from Rich to Poor Countries?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 80(2), pages 92-96, May.
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