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Fiscal Austerity during Debt Crises
This paper constructs a dynamic model in which fiscal restrictions interact with government borrowing and default. The government faces fiscal constraints; it cannot adjust tax rates or impose lump-sum taxes on the private sector, but it can adjust public consumption and foreign debt. When foreign debt is sufficiently high, however, the government can choose to default to increase domestic public and private consumption by freeing up the resources used to pay the debt. Two types of defaults arise in this environment: fiscal defaults and aggregate defaults. Fiscal defaults occur because of the ...
A Framework for Studying the Monetary and Fiscal History of Latin America, 1960–2017
We develop a conceptual framework for analyzing the interactions between aggregate fiscal policy and monetary policy. The framework draws on existing models that analyze sovereign debt crises and balance-of-payments crises. We intend this framework as a guide for analyzing the monetary and fiscal history of a set of eleven major Latin American countries—Argentina, Brazil, Bolivia, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Mexico, Paraguay, Peru, Uruguay, and Venezuela—from the 1960s until now.
Lessons from the Monetary and Fiscal History of Latin America
Studying the modern economic histories of eleven of the largest countries in Latin America teaches us that a lack of fiscal discipline has been at the root of most of the region's macroeconomic instability. The lack of fiscal discipline, however, takes various forms, not all of them measured in the primary deficit. Especially important have been implicit or explicit guarantees to the banking system; denomination of the debt in US dollars and short maturity of the debt; and transfers to some agents in the private sector, which are large in times of crisis and are not part of the budget ...
Coordination and Crisis in Monetary Unions
We study fiscal and monetary policy in a monetary union with the potential for rollover crises in sovereign debt markets. Member-country fiscal authorities lack commitment to repay their debt and choose fiscal policy independently. A common monetary authority chooses inflation for the union, also without commitment. We first describe the existence of a fiscal externality that arises in the presence of limited commitment and leads countries to over-borrow; this externality rationalizes the imposition of debt ceilings in a monetary union. We then investigate the impact of the composition of ...