IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/
MyIDEAS: Login to save this paper or follow this series

Optimal sovereign default

  • Adam, Klaus
  • Grill, Michael

When is it optimal for a government to default on its legal repayment obligations? We answer this question for a small open economy with domestic production risk in which contracting frictions make it optimal for the government to finance itself by issuing non-contingent debt. We show that Ramsey optimal policies occasionally deviate from the legal repayment obligation and repay debt only partially, even if such deviations give rise to significant 'default costs'. Optimal default improves the international diversification of domestic output risk, increases the efficiency of domestic investment and - for a wide range of default costs - significantly increases welfare relative to a situation where default is simply ruled out from Ramsey optimal plans. We show analytically that default is optimal following adverse shocks to domestic output, especially for very negative international wealth positions. A quantitative analysis reveals that for empirically plausible wealth levels, default is optimal only in response to disaster-like shocks to domestic output, and that following such shocks default can be Ramsey optimal even if the net foreign asset position is positive.

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

File URL: http://econstor.eu/bitstream/10419/71906/1/742526364.pdf
Download Restriction: no

Paper provided by Deutsche Bundesbank, Research Centre in its series Discussion Papers with number 09/2013.

as
in new window

Length:
Date of creation: 2013
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:zbw:bubdps:092013
Contact details of provider: Postal: Postfach 10 06 02, 60006 Frankfurt
Phone: 0 69 / 95 66 - 34 55
Fax: 0 69 / 95 66 30 77
Web page: http://www.bundesbank.de/
Email:


More information through EDIRC

References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:

as in new window
  1. Ugo Panizza & Federico Sturzenegger & Jeromin Zettelmeyer, 2009. "The Economics and Law of Sovereign Debt and Default," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 47(3), pages 651-98, September.
  2. Robert J. Barro & Tao Jin, 2011. "On the Size Distribution of Macroeconomic Disasters," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 79(5), pages 1567-1589, 09.
  3. Francois Gourio, 2009. "Disaster risk and business cycles," 2009 Meeting Papers 1176, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  4. Klingen, Christoph & Weder di Mauro, Beatrice & Zettelmeyer, Jeromin, 2004. "How Private Creditors Fared in Emerging Debt Markets, 1970-2000," CEPR Discussion Papers 4374, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  5. Rietz, Thomas A., 1988. "The equity risk premium a solution," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 22(1), pages 117-131, July.
  6. Pradeep Dubey & John Geanakoplos & Martin Shubik, 2001. "Default and Punishment in General Equilibrium," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 1304, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
  7. William R. Zame, 1992. "Efficiency and the Role of Default When Security Markets are Incomplete," UCLA Economics Working Papers 673, UCLA Department of Economics.
  8. Martin Uribe & Stephanie Schmitt-Grohe, 2001. "Optimal fiscal and monetary policy under sticky prices," Proceedings, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, issue Jun.
  9. Chari, V V & Christiano, Lawrence J & Kehoe, Patrick J, 1991. "Optimal Fiscal and Monetary Policy: Some Recent Results," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 23(3), pages 519-39, August.
  10. Manuel S. Santos, 2000. "Accuracy of Numerical Solutions using the Euler Equation Residuals," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 68(6), pages 1377-1402, November.
  11. Juan J. Cruces & Christoph Trebesch, 2011. "Sovereign Defaults: The Price of Haircuts," CESifo Working Paper Series 3604, CESifo Group Munich.
  12. Adam, Klaus, 2011. "Government debt and optimal monetary and fiscal policy," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 55(1), pages 57-74, January.
  13. Cristina Arellano & Jonathan Heathcote, 2007. "Dollarization and financial integration," International Finance Discussion Papers 890, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  14. Barro, Robert, 2006. "Rare Disasters and Asset Markets in the Twentieth Century," Scholarly Articles 3208215, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  15. Tauchen, George, 1986. "Finite state markov-chain approximations to univariate and vector autoregressions," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 20(2), pages 177-181.
  16. S. Rao Aiyagari & Albert Marcet & Thomas J. Sargent & Juha Seppala, 2002. "Optimal Taxation without State-Contingent Debt," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 110(6), pages 1220-1254, December.
  17. Christopher A. Sims, 2001. "Fiscal consequences for Mexico of adopting the dollar," Proceedings, Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland, pages 597-625.
  18. Michael Grill & Johannes Brumm, 2010. "Computing Equilibria in Dynamic Models with Occasionally Binding Constraints," 2010 Meeting Papers 695, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  19. Eaton, Jonathan & Gersovitz, Mark, 1981. "Debt with Potential Repudiation: Theoretical and Empirical Analysis," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 48(2), pages 289-309, April.
  20. George-Marios Angeletos, 2002. "Fiscal Policy With Noncontingent Debt And The Optimal Maturity Structure," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 117(3), pages 1105-1131, August.
  21. Juan J. Cruces & Christoph Trebesch, 2013. "Sovereign Defaults: The Price of Haircuts," American Economic Journal: Macroeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 5(3), pages 85-117, July.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:zbw:bubdps:092013. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (ZBW - German National Library of Economics)

If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.