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 analyzes the effects of several policy and other macro-economic variables on the ratio of private investment to GDP in developing countries. Using data for a sample of 23 developing countries over the period 1975-87, the econometric evidence indicates that the rate of private investment is positively related to the real growth rate of GDP, public sector investment, and to a lesser extent the level of per capita GDP, while it is negatively related to domestic inflation, the debt service ratio, the debt-to-GDP ratio, and high real interest rates. There is also some indication that all but the last of these variables had a greater impact before the onset of the debt crisis in 1982, while the debt-to-GDP ratio (a measure of a country’s debt overhang) has become more important since then.