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Gambling for Redemption and Self-Fulfilling Debt Crises

  • Timothy Kehoe

    (University of Minnesota)

  • Juan Carlos Conesa

    (Universitat Autonoma de Barcelona)

We develop a model for analyzing the sovereign debt crises of 2010 and 2011 in such European countries as Greece, Ireland, and Portugal. The government sets its expenditure-debt policy optimally given a fixed probability of a recovery in fiscal revenues. In doing so, the government can optimally choose to “gamble for redemption,†and the economy can be optimally driven to a level of debt that increases its vulnerability to self-fulfilling debt crises. The model explains why, in contrast to the Mexican crisis of 1994–95, where a loan package put together by U.S. President Bill Clinton put an immediate end to the crisis, rescue packages put together by the European Union do not seem to have ended the crises in Greece, Ireland, or Portugal.

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Paper provided by Society for Economic Dynamics in its series 2012 Meeting Papers with number 614.

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Date of creation: 2012
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Handle: RePEc:red:sed012:614
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Society for Economic Dynamics Marina Azzimonti Department of Economics Stonybrook University 10 Nicolls Road Stonybrook NY 11790 USA

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  1. Broner, Fernando A & Lorenzoni, Guido & Schmukler, Sergio, 2007. "Why Do Emerging Economies Borrow Short Term?," CEPR Discussion Papers 6249, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  2. Sosa-Padilla, Cesar, 2012. "Sovereign Defaults and Banking Crises," MPRA Paper 41074, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  3. S. Rao Aiyagari, 1994. "Uninsured Idiosyncratic Risk and Aggregate Saving," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 109(3), pages 659-684.
  4. Juan Carlos Hatchondo & Leonardo Martinez & Cesar Sosa-Padilla, 2014. "Debt Dilution and Sovereign Default Risk," Department of Economics Working Papers 2014-06, McMaster University.
  5. Carmen M. Reinhart & Kenneth S. Rogoff, 2009. "Varieties of Crises and Their Dates
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  6. Calvo, Guillermo A, 1988. "Servicing the Public Debt: The Role of Expectations," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 78(4), pages 647-61, September.
  7. Mark Aguiar & Gita Gopinath, 2004. "Defaultable debt, interest rates, and the current account," Working Papers 04-5, Federal Reserve Bank of Boston.
  8. Arellano, Cristina, 2008. "Default risk and income fluctuations in emerging economies," MPRA Paper 7867, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  9. Cole, Harold L. & Kehoe, Timothy J., 1996. "A self-fulfilling model of Mexico's 1994-1995 debt crisis," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 41(3-4), pages 309-330, November.
  10. Harold L. Cole & Timothy J. Kehoe, 1998. "Self-Fulfilling Debt Crises," Levine's Working Paper Archive 114, David K. Levine.
  11. Guido Lorenzoni & Ivan Werning, 2014. "Slow Moving Debt Crises," Levine's Working Paper Archive 786969000000000939, David K. Levine.
  12. Chamley Christophe P & Pinto Brian, 2011. "Why Official Bailouts Tend Not To Work: An Example Motivated by Greece 2010," The Economists' Voice, De Gruyter, vol. 8(1), pages 1-5, February.
  13. Huggett, Mark, 1993. "The risk-free rate in heterogeneous-agent incomplete-insurance economies," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 17(5-6), pages 953-969.
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