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Default risk and income fluctuations in emerging economies

  • Arellano, Cristina

Recent sovereign defaults in emerging countries are accompanied by interest rate spikes and deep recessions. This paper develops a small open economy model to study default risk and its interaction with output, consumption, and foreign debt. Default probabilities and interest rates depend on incentives for repayment. Default occurs in equilibrium because asset markets are incomplete. The model predicts that default incentives and interest rates are higher in recessions, as observed in the data. The reason is that in a recession, a risk averse borrower finds it more costly to repay non-contingent debt and is more likely to default. In a quantitative exercise the model matches various features of the business cycle in Argentina such as: high volatility of interest rates, higher volatility of consumption relative to output, a negative correlation of interest rates and output and a negative correlation of the trade balance and output. The model can also predict the recent default episode in Argentina.

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File URL: http://mpra.ub.uni-muenchen.de/7867/1/MPRA_paper_7867.pdf
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Paper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 7867.

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Date of creation: 2008
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Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:7867
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  2. Broner, Fernando A. & Lorenzoni, Guido & Schmukler, Sergio L., 2004. "Why do emerging economies borrow short term?," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3389, The World Bank.
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  8. Cristina Arellano & Ananth Ramanarayanan, 2006. "Default and the Term Structure in Sovereign Bonds," 2006 Meeting Papers 299, Society for Economic Dynamics.
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  20. Daniel Cohen & Jeffrey Sachs, 1991. "Growth and External Debt Under Risk of Debt Repudiation," NBER Chapters, in: International Volatility and Economic Growth: The First Ten Years of The International Seminar on Macroeconomics, pages 437-472 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  27. Manuel Amador, 2004. "A Political Model Sovereign Debt Repayment," 2004 Meeting Papers 762, Society for Economic Dynamics.
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