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 persistence of shocks to the terms of trade, using annual data on 42 Sub-Saharan African countries between 1960-96. We find that the persistence of terms of trade shocks varies widely—for about half the countries such shocks are short-lived, while for one-third of the countries such shocks are long-lived. The countries experiencing long-lived terms of trade shocks are typically those that have large shares of petroleum imports in total imports, small shares of nonfuel commodity exports in total exports, and are highly concentrated in exportable commodities with long-lived price shocks.