Creator: Cole, Harold Linh, 1957- and Kehoe, Timothy Jerome, 1953- Series: Staff report (Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. Research Department) Number: 210 Abstract:
This paper explores the extent to which the Mexican government's inability to roll over its debt during December 1994 and January 1995 can be modeled as a self-fulfilling debt crisis. In the model there is a crucial interval of debt for which the government, although it finds it optimal to repay old debt if it can sell new debt, finds it optimal to default if it cannot sell new debt. If government debt is in this interval, which we call the crisis zone, then we can construct equilibria in which a crisis can occur stochastically, depending on the realization of a sunspot variable. The size of this zone depends on the average length of maturity of government debt. Our analysis suggests that for a country, like Mexico, with a very short maturity structure of debt, the crisis zone is large and includes levels of debt as low as that in Mexico before the crisis.
Stichwort: Sunspot, Debt crisis, and Mexico Fach: F34 - International Lending and Debt Problems, E60 - Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook: General, and H63 - National Debt; Debt Management; Sovereign Debt
Creator: Aguiar, Mark, Amador, Manuel, Farhi, Emmanuel, and Gopinath, Gita, 1971- Series: Staff report (Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. Research Department) Number: 511 Abstract:
We study fiscal and monetary policy in a monetary union with the potential for rollover crises in sovereign debt markets. Member-country fiscal authorities lack commitment to repay their debt and choose fiscal policy independently. A common monetary authority chooses inflation for the union, also without commitment. We first describe the existence of a fiscal externality that arises in the presence of limited commitment and leads countries to over-borrow; this externality rationalizes the imposition of debt ceilings in a monetary union. We then investigate the impact of the composition of debt in a monetary union, that is the fraction of high-debt versus low-debt members, on the occurrence of self-fulfilling debt crises. We demonstrate that a high-debt country may be less vulnerable to crises and have higher welfare when it belongs to a union with an intermediate mix of high- and low-debt members, than one where all other members are low-debt. This contrasts with the conventional wisdom that all countries should prefer a union with low-debt members, as such a union can credibly deliver low inflation. These findings shed new light on the criteria for an optimal currency area in the presence of rollover crises.
Stichwort: Coordination failures, Monetary union, Debt crisis, and Fiscal policy Fach: E40 - Money and Interest Rates: General, F30 - International Finance: General, E50 - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit: General, and F40 - Macroeconomic Aspects of International Trade and Finance: General
Creator: Da-Rocha, Jose-Maria, Giménez Fernández, Eduardo Luís, and Lores Insua, Francisco Xavier Series: Advances in dynamic economics Abstract:
In this paper we will consider a simple small open economy with three assets - domestic capital, foreign securities and public debt - to study the government's incentives to devalue and to repay or default the debt. We show that the announcement of a devaluation is anticipated by domestic agents who reduce domestic investments and increase foreign holdings. Once a government devalues, the expectations vanish and the economy recovers its past levels of investment and GDP. However, in a country with international debt denominated in US dollars if a government devalues it requires a higher fraction of GDP to repay its external debt. In consequence, there exists a trade-off between recovering the economy and increasing the future cost of repaying the debt. Our main result is to show that, as devaluation beliefs exists, a devaluation increase government incentives to default and devalue. We calibrate our model to match the decrease in investment of domestic capital, the reduction in production, the increase in trade balance surplus, and the increase in debt levels observed throughout 2001 in Argentina. We show that for a probability of devaluation consistent with the risk premium of the Argentinian Government bonds nominated in dollars issued on April 2001 the external debt of Argentina was in a crisis zone were the government find optimal to default and to devalue.
Stichwort: Devaluation, Argentina, Latin America, South America, Default, and Debt crisis Fach: F34 - International finance - International lending and debt problems, E60 - Macroeconomic policy, macroeconomic aspects of public finance, and general outlook - General, and F30 - International finance - General
Creator: Arellano, Cristina and Bai, Yan Series: Staff report (Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. Research Department) Number: 525 Abstract:
This paper constructs a dynamic model in which fiscal restrictions interact with government borrowing and default. The government faces fiscal constraints; it cannot adjust tax rates or impose lump-sum taxes on the private sector, but it can adjust public consumption and foreign debt. When foreign debt is sufficiently high, however, the government can choose to default to increase domestic public and private consumption by freeing up the resources used to pay the debt. Two types of defaults arise in this environment: fiscal defaults and aggregate defaults. Fiscal defaults occur because of the government's inability to raise tax revenues. Aggregate defaults occur even if the government could raise tax revenues; debt is simply too high to be sustainable. In a quantitative exercise calibrated to Greece, we find that our model can predict the recent default, but that increasing taxes would not have prevented it. In fact, increasing taxes would have made the recession deeper because of the distortionary effects of taxation.
Stichwort: Debt crisis, Tax reforms, and Sovereign default Fach: F30 - International Finance: General
Creator: Conesa, Juan Carlos and Kehoe, Timothy Jerome, 1953- Series: Staff report (Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. Research Department) Number: 465 Abstract:
We develop a model for analyzing the sovereign debt crises of 2010–2013 in the Eurozone. The government sets its expenditure-debt policy optimally. The need to sell large quantities of bonds every period leaves the government vulnerable to self-fulfilling crises in which investors, anticipating a crisis, are unwilling to buy the bonds, thereby provoking the crisis. In this situation, the optimal policy of the government is to reduce its debt to a level where crises are not possible. If, however, the economy is in a recession where there is a positive probability of recovery in fiscal revenues, the government also has an incentive to smooth consumption and increase debt. Our exercise identifies conditions on fundamentals for which the incentive to smooth consumption dominates, giving rise to a situation where governments optimally “gamble for redemption,” running fiscal deficits and increasing their debt, thereby increasing their vulnerability to crises.
Stichwort: Recession, Debt crisis, Rollover crisis, and Eurozone Fach: F34 - International Lending and Debt Problems, E60 - Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook: General, F44 - International Business Cycles, and H13 - Economics of Eminent Domain; Expropriation; Nationalization
Creator: Atkeson, Andrew Series: Working paper (Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. Research Department) Number: 381 Abstract:
This paper examines the optimal debt contract between lenders and a sovereign borrower when the borrower is free to repudiate the debt and when his decision to invest or consume borrowed funds is unobservable. We show that recurrent debt crises are a necessary part of the incentive structure which supports the optimal pattern of lending.
Stichwort: Risk, Optimal debt contract, International capital, Foreign lending, Credit market, International loans, International debt, Debt crisis, and Moral hazard Fach: F34 - International Lending and Debt Problems