The IMF Working Papers series is designed to make IMF staff research available to a wide audience. Almost 300 Working Papers are released each year, covering a wide range of theoretical and analytical topics, including balance of payments, monetary and fiscal issues, global liquidity, and national and international economic developments.
Liquidity in the banking sector in Argentina reached new heights in early 1996 with the sharp reflow of deposits in the aftermath of the 1995 banking crisis. Yet, this did not translate into a similar recovery of credit to the private sector. Two hypotheses have been raised to explain this mismatch. One is that credit to the private sector was supply constrained because of adverse selection mechanisms exacerbated by the crisis. An alternative hypothesis is that credit was demand constrained, as unemployment remained high and the debt stock adjustment unwound only slowly through the first half of 1996. This paper examines these hypotheses.