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This paper develops a small open economy model in which entrepreneurs partially finance investment using foreign currency-denominated debt subject to an external finance premium. We use Bayesian estimation techniques to evaluate the importance of balance sheet-related credit market frictions for emerging market countries by incorporating the financial accelerator mechanism. We obtain a sizable value for the external finance premium, which is tightly estimated away from zero. Our results support the inclusion of the financial accelerator in an otherwise standard model that—acting through balance sheets—magnifies the impact of shocks, thereby increasing real and financial volatility.

International Monetary Fund. Research Dept.
This paper analyzes contagion and volatility with imperfect credit markets. The paper interprets contagion effects as an increase in the volatility of shocks impinging on the economy. The implications of this approach are analyzed in a model in which domestic banks borrow at a premium on world capital markets, and domestic producers borrow at a premium from domestic banks. Financial spreads depend on a markup that compensates lenders, in particular, for the expected cost of contract enforcement. Higher volatility increases financial spreads and the producers’ cost of capital.