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 assesses financial integration in Asia in terms of risk-sharing benefit versus financial-contagion cost. We construct a new measure of risk sharing based on a term structure model, which allows identification of realized stochastic discount factors. Risk sharing is low in Asia, and varies across time and countries, whereas contagion risks are more significant intra-regionally, and relatively stable over the past decade. An overall tradeoff exists between risk sharing and contagion, but the terms of tradeoffs vary across countries, depending on relative economic fluctuations and inflation differentials. Asia, therefore, can potentially enhance risk sharing without raising contagion risk.