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Ms. Adina Popescu and Mr. Ippei Shibata
This note analyzes the impact of preannounced government spending shocks in the United States on the real effective exchange rate and the trade balance. Using a vector autoregression framework that allows anticipated fiscal shocks to be identified using survey information, we find that preannounced spending shocks lead to a sizable real effective dollar appreciation and a worsening of both the aggregate trade balance and bilateral trade balances in a panel of partner countries. The results are robust to controlling for country-specific variables like the macroeconomic and policy conditions in the recipient countries, are generalized across regions and might have decreased during the zero-interest-lower-bound regime.
Patrick Blagrave and Mr. Esteban Vesperoni
Using a panel vector autoregression and a novel measure of export-intensity-adjusted final demand, this note studies spillovers from China’s economic transition on export growth in 46 advanced and emerging market economies. The analysis suggests that a 1 percentage point shock to China’s final demand growth reduces the average country’s export growth by 0.1–0.2 percentage point. The impact is largest in Emerging Asia, where an export-growth-accounting exercise suggests that China’s economic transition has reduced average export growth rates by 1 percentage point since early 2014. Other countries linked to China’s manufacturing sector, as well as commodity exporters, are also significantly affected. This suggests that trading partners need to adjust to an environment of weaker external demand as China completes its transition to a more sustainable growth model.
Francisco Arizala, Mr. Matthieu Bellon, Ms. Margaux MacDonald, Mr. Montfort Mlachila, and Mustafa Yenice
After close to two decades of strong economic activity, overall growth in sub-Saharan Africa decelerated markedly in 2015–16 as the largest economies experienced negative or flat growth. Regional growth started recovering in 2017, but the question remains of how trends in the economies stuck in low gear will spill over to the countries that have maintained robust growth. This note illuminates the discussion by identifying growth spillover channels. The focus is on trade, banking, financial, remittance, investment, fiscal, and security channels, which are the most prominent and most likely to transmit growth trends across borders. In addition to bringing together findings from a broad array of existing research, the note identifies countries that are the most likely sources of regional spillovers and those that are most likely to be impacted, and provides estimates for the size of these channels. It finds that intraregional trade and remittance flows are an important channel for growth spillovers, while banking channels are less important but will remain a risk going forward. Finally, the note documents other important spillover channels through financial markets contagion, revenue-sharing arrangements in fiscal unions, commodity-pricing policies, corporate investment, and forced migration. The main takeaway is that the level of interdependence among sub-Saharan countries is higher than is generally assumed. Consequently, there is a need for additional emphasis on regional surveillance and spillover analysis, along with traditional bilateral surveillance.