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On the brink? Intra-euro area imbalances and the sustainability of foreign debt

  • Körner, Finn Marten
  • Zemanek, Holger

In this paper we study the intra-euro area imbalances based on a dynamic general equilibrium model. We show that European financial integration and the introduction of the euro might have contributed to the development of imbalances. Interest rate convergence following EMU accession led to net foreign debt positions, which prove difficult to reverse. Simulation results for the euro area suggest that current account imbalances and foreign debt positions of today's crisis countries have significantly diverged from a sustainable path. Increasing investment in the EMU core and productivity in crisis countries may permit a return to sustainable foreign debt levels and correct macroeconomic imbalances in the euro area.

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Paper provided by University of Leipzig, Faculty of Economics and Management Science in its series Working Papers with number 109.

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Date of creation: 2012
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Handle: RePEc:zbw:leiwps:109
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  1. Tamim Bayoumi and Barry Eichengreen., 1992. "Shocking Aspects of European Monetary Unification," Economics Working Papers 92-187, University of California at Berkeley.
  2. Kiyotaki, Nobuhiro & Moore, John, 1997. "Credit Cycles," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 105(2), pages 211-48, April.
  3. Robert Mundell, 2000. "Currency Areas, Exchange Rate Systems and International Monetary Reform," CEMA Working Papers: Serie Documentos de Trabajo. 167, Universidad del CEMA.
  4. Martin Feldstein & Charles Horioka, 1979. "Domestic Savings and International Capital Flows," NBER Working Papers 0310, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Summers, Lawrence H, 1981. "Capital Taxation and Accumulation in a Life Cycle Growth Model," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 71(4), pages 533-44, September.
  6. Bela Balassa, 1964. "The Purchasing-Power Parity Doctrine: A Reappraisal," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 72, pages 584.
  7. Lane, Philip R. & Pels, Barbara, 2012. "Current Account Imbalances in Europe," CEPR Discussion Papers 8958, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  8. Maurice Obstfeld & Kenneth Rogoff, 1994. "The Intertemporal Approach to the Current Account," NBER Working Papers 4893, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Alberto Alesina & Silvia Ardagna & Francesco Trebbi, 2006. "Who Adjusts and When? On the Political Economy of Reforms," NBER Working Papers 12049, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Gunther Schnabl & Holger Zemanek, 2011. "Inter-temporal savings, current account trends and asymmetric shocks in a heterogeneous European Monetary Union," Intereconomics: Review of European Economic Policy, Springer, vol. 46(3), pages 153-160, June.
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