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The Consequences of Banking Crises for Public Debt

  • Davide Furceri
  • Aleksandra Zdzienicka

The aim of this paper is to assess the consequences of banking crises for public debt. Using an unbalanced panel of 154 countries from 1980 to 2006, the paper shows that banking crises are associated with a significant and long-lasting increase in government debt. The effect is a function of the severity of the crisis. In particular, for severe crises, comparable to the most recent one in terms of output losses, banking crises are followed by a medium-term increase of about 37 percentage points in the government gross debt-to-GDP ratio. Measuring the increase in debt in this manner seems more appropriate than some of the measures used in the literature that have provided off-quoted and very large numbers for the run-up in debt. In addition, the debt ratio increased more in countries with a higher initial gross debt-to-GDP ratio and with a higher initial foreign debt-to-GDP ratio. Les conséquences des crises bancaires pour la dette publique L’objectif de ce document est de déterminer l’impact des crises bancaires sur la dette publique. Les résultats obtenus utilisant un panel non-cylindré de 154 pays sur la période 1980-2006 montrent que les crises bancaires provoquent une augmentation significative et persistante de la dette publique. Cet effet dépend de la sévérité de la crise. Plus précisément, les crises dont la sévérité est comparable à la crise la plus récente en termes de pertes de PIB augmentent la dette publique brute par rapport PIB d’environ 37 points de pourcentage à moyen terme. Cette approche semble être plus appropriée par rapport à celles utilisées dans la littérature qui centrées sur la dette publique elle-même rapportent l’impact beaucoup plus important des crises bancaires. De plus, l’impact des crises bancaires croît en fonction du niveau initial de la dette public et de la dette extérieur par rapport au PIB.

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Paper provided by OECD Publishing in its series OECD Economics Department Working Papers with number 801.

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Date of creation: 25 Aug 2010
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Handle: RePEc:oec:ecoaaa:801-en
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  1. Schuknecht, Ludger & von Hagen, Jürgen & Wolswijk, Guido, 2007. "Government Risk Premiums in the Bond Market: EMU and Canada," CEPR Discussion Papers 6579, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
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  3. Davide Furceri & Aleksandra Zdzienicka, 2010. "Banking Crises and Short and Medium Term Output Losses in Developing Countries: The Role of Structural and Policy Variables," Working Papers 1014, Groupe d'Analyse et de Théorie Economique (GATE), Centre national de la recherche scientifique (CNRS), Université Lyon 2, Ecole Normale Supérieure.
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  14. Carmen M. Reinhart & Kenneth S. Rogoff, 2008. "This Time is Different: A Panoramic View of Eight Centuries of Financial Crises," NBER Working Papers 13882, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  15. Hutchison, Michael M & Noy, Ilan, 2005. "How Bad Are Twins? Output Costs of Currency and Banking Crises," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 37(4), pages 725-52, August.
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  17. Guillermo A. Calvo & Alejandro Izquierdo & Luis-Fernando Mejia, 2004. "On the Empirics of Sudden Stops: The Relevance of Balance-Sheet Effects," NBER Working Papers 10520, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  18. Davide Furceri & Annabelle Mourougane, 2009. "The Effect of Financial Crises on Potential Output: New Empirical Evidence from OECD Countries," OECD Economics Department Working Papers 699, OECD Publishing.
  19. Gerard Caprio & Patrick Honohan, 2008. "Banking Crises," Center for Development Economics 2008-09, Department of Economics, Williams College.
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  22. Davide Furceri & Annabelle Mourougane, 2009. "Financial Crises: Past Lessons and Policy Implications," OECD Economics Department Working Papers 668, OECD Publishing.
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