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.
La-Bhus Fah Jirasavetakul, and Antonio Spilimbergo
INTERNATIONAL MONETARY FUND
Uncertainty over economic policy plays a key role in economic outcomes. But evidence and quantification for emerging markets are elusive because of measurement and reverse causality issues. In this paper, we construct a news-based economic policy uncertainty (EPU) index for Turkey and assess how it affects Turkish firms. To disentangle the issues of endogeneity and reverse causality, we use a difference-in-differences approach, exploiting the fact that firms with a high share of irreversible investment are more exposed to policy uncertainty. In sectors with large irreversible investment EPU has a greater effect on growth, investment, and leverage. The results are robust to different definitions of investment irreversibility, lag structure, and selection of sectors.