Rising Public Debt to GDP Can Harm Economic Growth
The debt?growth relationship is complex, varying across countries and affected by global factors. While there is no simple universal threshold above which debt to GDP significantly depresses growth, high and rising public debt burdens slow growth in the long term, data from the past four decades indicate.
AUTHORS: Chudik, Alexander; Pesaran, M. Hashem; Raissi, Mehdi; Mohaddes, Kamiar
Fair weather or foul? the macroeconomic effects of El Niño
This paper employs a dynamic multi-country framework to analyze the international macroeconomic transmission of El Nio weather shocks. This framework comprises 21 country/region-specific models, estimated over the period 1979Q2 to 2013Q1, and accounts for not only direct exposures of countries to El Nio shocks but also indirect effects through third-markets. We contribute to the climate-macroeconomy literature by exploiting exogenous variation in El Nio weather events over time, and their impact on different regions cross-sectionally, to causatively identify the effects of El Nio shocks on growth, inflation, energy and non-fuel commodity prices. The results show that there are considerable heterogeneities in the responses of different countries to El Nio shocks. While Australia, Chile, Indonesia, India, Japan, New Zealand and South Africa face a short-lived fall in economic activity in response to an El Nio shock, for other countries (including the United States and European region), an El Nio occurrence has a growth-enhancing effect. Furthermore, most countries in our sample experience short-run inflationary pressures as both energy and non-fuel commodity prices increase. Given these findings, macroeconomic policy formulation should take into consideration the likelihood and effects of El Nio weather episodes.
AUTHORS: Cashin, Paul; Raissi, Mehdi; Mohaddes, Kamiar
Long-Term Macroeconomic Effects of Climate Change: A Cross-Country Analysis
We study the long-term impact of climate change on economic activity across countries, using a stochastic growth model where labor productivity is affected by country-specific climate variables?defined as deviations of temperature and precipitation from their historical norms. Using a panel data set of 174 countries over the years 1960 to 2014, we find that per-capita real output growth is adversely affected by persistent changes in the temperature above or below its historical norm, but we do not obtain any statistically significant effects for changes in precipitation. Our counterfactual analysis suggests that a persistent increase in average global temperature by 0.04C per year, in the absence of mitigation policies, reduces world real GDP per capita by 7.22 percent by 2100. On the other hand, abiding by the Paris Agreement, thereby limiting the temperature increase to 0.01C per annum, reduces the loss substantially to 1.07 percent. These effects vary significantly across countries. We also provide supplementary evidence using data on a sample of 48 U.S. states between 1963 and 2016, and show that climate change has a long-lasting adverse impact on real output in various states and economic sectors, and on labor productivity and employment.
AUTHORS: Kahn, Matthew E.; Mohaddes, Kamiar; Ng, Ryan N. C.; Pesaran, M. Hashem; Raissi, Mehdi; Yang, Jui-Chung
Debt, inflation and growth robust estimation of long-run effects in dynamic panel data models
This paper investigates the long-run effects of public debt and inflation on economic growth. Our contribution is both theoretical and empirical. On the theoretical side, we develop a cross-sectionally augmented distributed lag (CS-DL) approach to the estimation of long-run effects in dynamic heterogeneous panel data models with cross-sectionally dependent errors. The relative merits of the CS-DL approach and other existing approaches in the literature are discussed and illustrated with small sample evidence obtained by means of Monte Carlo simulations. On the empirical side, using data on a sample of 40 countries over the 1965-2010 period, we find significant negative long-run effects of public debt and inflation on growth. Our results indicate that, if the debt to GDP ratio is raised and this increase turns out to be permanent, then it will have negative effects on economic growth in the long run. But if the increase is temporary then there are no long-run growth effects so long as debt to GDP is brought back to its normal level. We do not find a universally applicable threshold effect in the relationship between public debt and growth. We only find statistically significant threshold effects in the case of countries with rising debt to GDP ratios.
AUTHORS: Chudik, Alexander; Raissi, Mehdi; Mohaddes, Kamiar; Pesaran, M. Hashem
The Growth Effects of El Niño and La Niña: Local Weather Conditions Matter
This paper contributes to the climate-economy literature by analyzing the role of weather patterns in influencing the transmission of global climate cycles to economic growth. More specifically, we focus on El Nio Southern Oscillation (ENSO) events and their interactions with local weather conditions, taking into account the heterogeneous and cumulative effects of weather patterns on economic growth and the asymmetry and nonlinearity in the global influence of ENSO on economic activity. Using data on 75 countries over the period 1975-2014, we provide evidence for the negative growth effects of ENSO events and show that there are substantial differences between its warm (El Nio) and cold (La Nia) phases and between climate zones. These differences are due to the heterogeneity in weather responses to ENSO events, known as teleconnections, which has so far not been taken into account by economists, and which will become more important in the climate-economy relationship given that climate change may substantially strengthen long-distance relationships between weather patterns around the world. We also show that the negative growth effects associated with these teleconnections are robust to the definition of ENSO events and more important over shorter meteorological onsets.
AUTHORS: Couharde, Cécile; Damette, Olivier; Generoso , Rémi; Mohaddes, Kamiar
Oil, Volatility and Institutions: Cross-Country Evidence from Major Oil Producers
This paper examines the long-run effects of oil revenue and its volatility on economic growth as well as the role of institutions in this relationship. We collect annual and monthly data on a sample of 17 major oil producers over the period 1961-2013, and use the standard panel autoregressive distributed lag (ARDL) approach as well as its cross-sectionally augmented version (CS-ARDL) for estimation. Therefore, in contrast to the earlier literature on the resource curse, we take into account all three key features of the panel: dynamics, heterogeneity and cross-sectional dependence. Our results suggest that (i) there is a significant negative effect of oil revenue volatility on output growth, (ii) higher growth rate of oil revenue significantly raises economic growth, and (iii) better fiscal policy (institutions) can offset some of the negative effects of oil revenue volatility. We therefore argue that volatility in oil revenues combined with poor governmental responses to this volatility drives the resource curse paradox, not the abundance of oil revenues as such.
AUTHORS: El-Anshasy, Amany; Mohaddes, Kamiar; Nugent, Jeffrey B.
Do Sovereign Wealth Funds Dampen the Negative Effects of Commodity Price Volatility?
This paper studies the impact of commodity terms of trade (CToT) volatility on economic growth (and its sources) in a sample of 69 commodity-dependent countries, and assesses the role of Sovereign Wealth Funds (SWFs) and quality of institutions in their long-term growth performance. Using annual data over the period 1981-2014, we employ the Cross-Sectionally augmented Autoregressive Distributive Lag (CS-ARDL) methodology for estimation to account for cross-country heterogeneity, cross-sectional dependence, and feedback effects. We find that while CToT volatility exerts a negative impact on economic growth (operating through lower accumulation of physical capital and lower TFP), the average impact is dampened if a country has a SWF and better institutional quality (hence a more stable government expenditure).
AUTHORS: Mohaddes, Kamiar; Raissi, Mehdi
China’s slowdown and global financial market volatility: is world growth losing out?
China?s GDP growth slowdown and a surge in global financial market volatility could both adversely affect an already weak global economic recovery. To quantify the global macroeconomic consequences of these shocks, we employ a GVAR model estimated for 26 countries/regions over the period 1981Q1 to 2013Q1. Our results indicate that (i) a one percent permanent negative GDP shock in China (equivalent to a one-off one percent growth shock) could have significant global macroeconomic repercussions, with world growth reducing by 0:23 percentage points in the short-run; and (ii) a surge in global financial market volatility could translate into a fall in world economic growth of around 0:29 percentage points, but it could also have negative short-run impacts on global equity markets, oil prices and long-term interest rates.
AUTHORS: Cashin, Paul; Raissi, Mehdi; Mohaddes, Kamiar
The U.S. oil supply revolution and the global economy
This paper investigates the global macroeconomic consequences of falling oil prices due to the oil revolution in the United States, using a Global VAR model estimated for 38 countries/regions over the period 1979Q2 to 2011Q2. Set-identification of the U.S. oil supply shock is achieved through imposing dynamic sign restrictions on the impulse responses of the model. The results show that there are considerable heterogeneities in the responses of different countries to a U.S. supply-driven oil price shock, with real GDP increasing in both advanced and emerging market oil-importing economies, output declining in commodity exporters, inflation falling in most countries, and equity prices rising worldwide. Overall, our results suggest that following the U.S. oil revolution, with oil prices falling by 51 percent in the first year, global growth increases by 0.16 to 0.37 percentage points. This is mainly due to an increase in spending by oil importing countries, which exceeds the decline in expenditure by oil exporters.
AUTHORS: Raissi, Mehdi; Mohaddes, Kamiar
Oil prices and the global economy: is it different this time around?
The recent plunge in oil prices has brought into question the generally accepted view that lower oil prices are good for the US and the global economy. In this paper, using a quarterly multi-country econometric model, we first show that a fall in oil prices tends relatively quickly to lower interest rates and inflation in most countries, and increase global real equity prices. The effects on real output are positive, although they take longer to materialize (around 4 quarters after the shock). We then re-examine the effects of low oil prices on the US economy over different sub-periods using monthly observations on real oil prices, real equity prices and real dividends. We confirm the perverse positive relationship between oil and equity prices over the period since the 2008 financial crisis highlighted in the recent literature, but show that this relationship has been unstable when considered over the longer time period of 1946-2016. In contrast, we find a stable negative relationship between oil prices and real dividends which we argue is a better proxy for economic activity (as compared to equity prices). On the supply side, the effects of lower oil prices differ widely across the different oil producers, and could be perverse initially, as some of the major oil producers try to compensate their loss of revenues by raising production. Taking demand and supply adjustments to oil price changes as a whole, we conclude that oil markets equilibrate but rather slowly, with large episodic swings between low and high oil prices.
AUTHORS: Pesaran, M. Hashem; Mohaddes, Kamiar