Mr. Ilhyock Shim, Sebnem Kalemli-Ozcan, and Xiaoxi Liu
We quantify the effect of exchange rate fluctuations on firm leverage. When home currency appreciates, firms who hold foreign currency debt and local currency assets observe higher net worth as appreciation lowers the value of their foreign currency debt. These firms can borrow more as a result and increase their leverage. When home currency depreciates, the reverse happens as firms have to de-lever with a negative shock to their balance sheets. Using firm-level data for leverage from 10 emerging market economies during the period from 2002 to 2015, we show that firms operating in countries whose non-financial sectors hold more of the debt in foreign currency, increase (decrease) their leverage relatively more after home currency appreciations (depreciations). Combining the leverage data with firm-level FX debt data for 4 emerging market countries, we further show that our results hold at the most granular level. Our quantitative results are asymmetric: the effects of depre-ciations, that are generally associated with sudden stops, are quantitatively larger than those of appreciations, which take place at a slower pace over time during capital inflow episodes. As our exercise compares depreciations and appreciations of similar size, these results are suggestive of financial frictions being more binding during depreciations than a possible relaxation of such frictions during appreciations.
Mr. Philip Barrett, Maximiliano Appendino, Kate Nguyen, and Jorge de Leon Miranda
We present a new index of social unrest based on counts of relevant media reports. The index consists of individual monthly time series for 130 countries, available with almost no lag, and can be easily and transparently replicated. Spikes in the index identify major events, which correspond very closely to event timelines from external sources for four major regional waves of social unrest. We show that the cross-sectional distribution of the index can be simply and precisely characterized, and that social unrest is associated with a 3 percentage point increase in the frequency of social unrest domestically and a 1 percent increase in neighbors in the next six months. Despite this, social unrest is not a better predictor of future social unrest than the country average rate.
Nicolas Mäder, Jean-Guillaume Poulain, and Julien Reynaud
Extending previous work on the determinants of IMF lending in an interconnected world, we
introduce a model of sample selection in which both selection and size dimensions of
individual IMF arrangements are presented within a unified econometric framework. We
allow for unobserved heterogeneity to create an additional channel for sample selection at the
country level. The results suggest that higher external financing needs, larger exchange rate
depreciation, lower GDP growth, as well as deteriorated global financial conditions, are
associated with larger individual IMF arrangement sizes. Using the estimated parameters,
Monte Carlo simulation of a wide spectrum of global shock scenarios suggest that the
distribution of potential aggregate IMF lending exhibits a substantial right tail. Our approach
may provide an insightful input to broader policy discussions on the adequacy of the IMF
Superficial examination of aggregate gross cross-border capital inflow data suggests that there
was no substitution between portfolio inflows and bank loans in recent years. However, our
novel analysis of disaggregate inflows (both by types of instrument and borrower) shows
interesting heterogeneity. There has been substitution of bank loans for portfolio debt securities
not only in the case of corporate and sovereign borrowers in advanced countries, but also
sovereign borrowers in emerging countries. In the case of corporate borrowers in emerging
markets, the relationship corresponds to complementarity across types of gross capital inflows,
especially during periods of positive capital gross inflows after the global financial crisis. A
large part of these patterns does not seem to be driven by a common phenomenon across
countries associated with the global financial cycle, but rather by country-specific factors.
Using a comprehensive global dataset, we outline stylized facts characterizing relationships between crude oil prices and macroeconomic developments across the world. Approaching the data from several angles, we find that the impact of higher oil prices on oil-importing economies is generally small: a 25 percent increase in oil prices typically causes GDP to fall by about half of one percent or less. While cross-country differences in impact are found to depend mainly on the relative size of oil imports, we also show that oil price shocks are not always costly for oil-importing countries: although higher oil prices increase the import bill, there are partly offsetting increases in external receipts. We provide a small open economy model illustrating the main transmission channels of oil shocks, and show how the recycling of petrodollars may mitigate the impact.
This paper aims to promote harmonization between macroeconomic statistics guidelines and accounting standards. It first highlights recent development that act as drivers to the harmonization of the two systems. It then compares the two systems and reviews approaches aimed at further harmonization. This is followed by a description of the specificity of each system in terms of the emphasis each puts on various aspects of data quality. The paper concludes that through differences between the two systems will remain, they are more likely to be documented, via statistical metadata, than in the past; in the public sector, there is a promising potential for data reconciliation in the form of bridging items; and convergence is likely to be achieved in selected areas.
Both national accounts and balance of payments are based on multiple, complex source data and typically undergo several routine revisions as more and better source data are incorporated into the final estimates. As a result, neither dataset can be subjected directly to the usual statistical measures of sampling biases, variances, and other measurement error properties. In this context, this note, which is addressed to those interested in these datasets and others, explores four approaches that shed light on the accuracy and reliability of these datasets: examination of statistical discrepancies, comparison with other data, analysis of revisions, and judgmental evaluation.
This paper presents a simple simulation model that enables the formulation of a consistent growth-oriented, medium-term adjustment program. The applied version is available in Excel (using data for El Salvador) and can be used directly as a financial programming tool that provides a range of standard IMF performance criteria together with a complete set of consistent accounts for the real, monetary, public, and external sectors of the economy. Medium- and long-term growth considerations are incorporated through a neoclassical production function at the same time as monetary and fiscal policies are adjusted to satisfy the requirements for internal and external balance.
The paper identifies a number of stylized facts on the behavior of key macroeconomic variables during high inflation and stabilization in countries in transition. To examine the extent to which these stylized facts conform to the predictions of standard open economy monetary theory, the paper develops a simple monetary model of the exchange rate incorporating price stickiness and inflation inertia, and carries out an econometric analysis of the behavior of real money balances during inflation stabilization. The paper concludes by assessing the prospects for velocity developments in countries in transition, including the likely pace of remonetization.
This paper investigates the determinants of the international role of a currency. It argues that standard determinants such as monetary performance and financial openness are at best imperfect indicators of a currency’s stability prospects, because the issuer’s promise of stability is not exogenously enforceable. The paper advocates an enforcement approach to international currencies that make explicit the underlying incentive incompatibilities. Additional enforcement determinants of currency internationalization are identified. The model is estimated using time-series cross-sectional analysis for three data sets. Monetary performance-related standard determinants fail to exhibit explanatory power, whereas the enforcement determinants are strongly significant and robust.