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Prospective Deficits and the Asian Currency Crises

Опубликовано на портале: 04-11-2004
Journal of Political Economy. 2001.  Vol. 109. No. 6. P. 1155-1197. 
This paper argues that principal cause of the 1997 Asian currency crisis was large prospective associated with implicit bailout guarantees to failing banking systems. The expectation that these future deficits would be at least partly financed by seigniorage revenues or an inflation tax on outstanding nominal debt led to a collapse of the fixed exchange rate regimes in Asia. Authors articulate this view using a simple dynamic general equilibrium model whose key feature is that a speculative attack is inevitable once the present value of future government deficits rises. While the government cannot prevent a speculative attack, it can affect its timing. The longer the delay, the higher inflation will be under the subsequent flexible exchange rate regime. We present empirical evidence in support of the four key assumptions in our interpretation of the crisis: (i) the currency crises could not have been predicted on the basis of standard macroeconomic indicators; (ii) the exchange rate crises were preceded by publicly available signs of imminent banking crises; (iii) failing financial sectors were associated with large prospective government deficits; and (iv) governments were either unwilling or unable to raise the resource required to pay for bank bailouts via fiscal reforms.

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IMF Staff Papers. 1998.  Vol. 45. No. 1.
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