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IMF Working Paper Series

Опубликовано на портале: 16-12-2003
Christopher Kent, Paul A. Cashin IMF Working Paper Series. 2003.  No. 03/143 .
Is the relationship between the current account balance and the terms of trade affected by the persistence of terms of trade shocks? In intertemporal models of the current account that incorporate a consumption-smoothing and an investment response to shocks, the effect of the terms of trade on external balances is predicted to be dependent on the duration of terms of trade shocks. Using a median-unbiased estimator, an unbiased model-selection rule, and terms of trade data for 128 countries over the period 1960-99 we identify two groups of countries-those that typically experience temporary terms of trade shocks and those that typically experience permanent terms of trade shocks. The results from panel-data regressions of the two groups of countries support the theoretical predictions of the intertemporal approach to the current account. We find that the greater (lesser) the persistence of the terms of trade shock, the more (less) the investment effect dominates the consumption-smoothing effect on saving, so that the current account balance moves in the opposite (same) direction as that of the shock.
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Опубликовано на портале: 16-12-2003
Arvind Subramanian, Shang-Jin Wei IMF Working Paper Series. 2003.  No. 03/185.
This paper furnishes robust evidence that the GATT/WTO has had a powerful and positive impact on trade. The impact has, however, been uneven. GATT/WTO membership for industrial countries has been associated with a large increase in imports estimated at about 40 percent of world trade. The same has not been true for developing country members, although those that joined after the Uruguay Round have benefited from increased imports. Similarly, there have been asymmetric effects among sectors, with WTO membership associated with substantially greater imports in sectors where barriers are low. These results are consistent with the history and design of the institution, which presided over significant trade liberalization by the industrial countries except in sectors such as food and clothing; largely exempted developing countries from the obligations to liberalize under the principle of special and differential treatment; but attempted to redress the latter by imposing greater obligations on developing country members that joined after the Uruguay Round.
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Опубликовано на портале: 22-12-2003
Allan D. Brunner, Kanda Naknoi IMF Working Paper Series. 2003.  No. 03/54 .
This paper examines the effects of trade costs on macroeconomic volatility. Autors first construct a dynamic, two-country general equilibrium model, where the degree of market integration depends directly on trade costs (transport costs, tariffs, etc.). The model is a extension of Obstfeld and Rogoff (1995). Naturally, a reduction in trade costs leads to more market integration, as the relative price of foreign goods falls and households increase their consumption of imported goods. In addition, with more market integration, the model predicts that the variability of the real exchange rate should fall, while the variability of the trade balance should increase. Trade costs have ambiguous effects on the volatility of other macro variables, such as income and consumption. Finally, autors present some empirical findings that provide mixed support for the model's predictions.
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Опубликовано на портале: 22-12-2003
Claudio A. Paiva IMF Working Paper Series. 2003.  No. 03/140 .
This paper provides econometric estimates of trade elasticities for Brazil obtained through cointegration and vector auto regression models and controlling for the effects of exchange rate volatility, capacity utilization, and changes in import tariffs. The results suggest that (i) recent market expectations may have been unduly pessimistic regarding the responsiveness of Brazil's trade flows to the real exchange rate, but (ii) the GDP growth rates targeted by the new government may put downward pressure on the exchange rate and thus render the achievement of official inflation targets considerably more difficult if structural reforms are not implemented.
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Опубликовано на портале: 22-12-2003
Jean Imbs IMF Working Paper Series. 2003.  No. 03/81 .
The paper investigates the determinants of business cycles synchronization across regions. It uses both international and intra-national data to evaluate the linkages between trade in goods, trade in financial assets, specialization and business cycles synchronization using a system of simultaneous equations. The results are as follows: (i) Simultaneity is important, as both trade and financial openness have a direct and an indirect effect on cycle synchronization. (ii) A variety of alternative measures of financial integration suggest that regions with strong financial links are significantly more synchronized, though they are also more specialized. (iii) Specialization patterns have a sizable effect on business cycles, beyond their reflection of intra-industry trade, and of openness to goods and assets trade. (iv) The estimated role of trade is in line with existing models once intra-industry trade is controlled for. The results relate to a recent strand of international business cycle models with incomplete markets and transport costs, and, on the empirical side, point to an important omission in the usual criteria defining an optimal currency area, namely specialization patterns.
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Опубликовано на портале: 22-12-2003
Andrew Berg, Anne O. Krueger IMF Working Paper Series. 2003.  No. 03/30 .
This survey of the recent literature asks: how important is trade policy for poverty reduction? Autors consider the effects of openness on poverty in two components: the effect of openness on average income growth, and the effect on distribution for a given growth rate. Evidence from a variety of sources (cross-country and panel growth regressions, industry and firm-level research, and case studies) supports the view that trade openness contributes greatly to growth. Moreover, trade openness does not have systematic effects on the poor beyond its effect on overall growth. Trade policy is only one of many determinants of growth and poverty reduction. Trade openness has important positive spillovers on other aspects of reform, however, so that the correlation of trade with other pro-reform policies speaks to the advantages of making openness a primary part of the reform package.
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Опубликовано на портале: 16-12-2003
Xiangming Li IMF Working Paper Series. 2003.  No. 03/124.
Although theory suggests that the real exchange rate should depreciate after a credible trade liberalization but could appreciate temporarily with a noncredible one, little empirical evidence exists. Unlike existing studies that use either indirect tests or unreliable openness measures, this paper uses an event study based on carefully documented trade liberalization in 45 countries. The result shows that real exchange rates depreciate after countries open their economies to trade. In countries with multiple liberalization episodes, however, real exchange rates appreciate during early episodes, suggesting that partial or noncredible trade liberalizations are associated with real appreciation.
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Опубликовано на портале: 22-12-2003
Qaizar Hussain, R. Scott Hacker IMF Working Paper Series. 1998.  No. 98/84.
This paper uses a three-country duopoly model to examine the effects of lowered trade barriers when a new entrant wants to join a preferential trading bloc. There are two firms: a small-country firm and a large-country firm within the bloc; three markets: two within the bloc and one (the new entrant) outside the bloc. The model analyzes the effects of reduced tariffs on the quantities produced and sold, the prices charged, and the profits earned by each firm. Under rising marginal costs the results are in line with the main results of Casella (1996). Like Casella's results, this paper's results also generally show greater gains for the firm in the small country than for the firm in the large country, although Casella uses a monopolistic competition model. The main results of the paper (under increasing marginal cost) are as follows. First, the small-country firm will export more to the external country than the large-country firm, though each firm produces more for its own domestic market. Second, as a result of a reduction in tariffs, the export share of the large-country firm will increase relative to that of the small-country firm. Finally, profits will improve more for the small-country firm than for the large-country firm if tariffs decline in the external country. An important implication can be derived from our results. Firms in small countries such as Austria, Portugal, and Sweden should not necessarily be alarmed when the Eastern European countries join the European Union. This is especially true if these firms have substantial market power in the output market relative to large-country firms. For instance, it is quite likely that Volvo and Saab from Sweden may enjoy greater increases in profits than their German counterparts, Volkswagen and Mercedes-Benz, owing to a reduction in import tariffs in Poland or Estonia.
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