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.
This paper examines the relationship between temporary terms of trade shocks and household saving in developing countries. It is first shown that, from a theoretical standpoint, this relationship is ambiguous: private saving may rise or fall in response to a transitory terms of trade shock, depending on the values of the intertemporal elasticity of substitution and the intratemporal elasticity of substitution between traded and nontraded goods. Empirical estimates of these two parameters are obtained using data from a sample of 13 developing countries, and then used to draw implications for the response of private saving to transitory terms of trade shocks.