Determinants and impact of sovereign credit ratings
The authors conduct the first systematic analysis of the determinants and impact of the sovereign credit ratings assigned by the two leading U.S. agencies, Moody's Investor Services and Standard and Poor's. Of the large number of criteria used by the two agencies, six factors appear to play an important role in determining a country's credit rating: per capita income, GDP growth, inflation, external debt, level of economic development, and default history. In addition, the authors find that sovereign ratings influence market yields--particularly those on non-investment-grade ...
Estimating the impacts of U.S. LSAPs on emerging market economies’ local currency bond markets
This paper examines whether large-scale asset purchases (LSAPs) by the Federal Reserve influenced capital flows out of the United States and into emerging market economies (EMEs) and also analyzes the degree of pass-through from long-term U.S. government bond yields to long-term EME bond yields. Using panel data from a broad array of EMEs, our empirical estimates suggest that a 10-basis-point reduction in long-term U.S. Treasury yields results in a 0.4-percentage-point increase in the foreign ownership share of emerging market debt. This, in turn, is estimated to reduce government bond yields ...
When is there a strong transfer risk from the sovereigns to the corporates? Property rights gaps and CDS spreads
When a sovereign faces the risk of debt default, it may be tempted to expropriate the private sector. This may be one reason why international investment in private companies has to take into account the sovereign risk. But the likelihood of sovereign risk transferring to corporates and increasing their risk of default may be mitigated by legal institutions that provide strong property rights protection. Using a novel credit default swaps (CDS) data set covering government and corporate entities across thirty countries, we study both the average strength of the transfer risks and the role of ...
Reducing international imbalances in an interdependent world
Debt reduction and market reentry under the Brady plan
In March 1989, U.S. Treasury Secretary Brady proposed a new approach to resolving the developing country debt problem and restoring the creditworthiness of restructuring countries. The Brady Plan encouraged market-based reductions in debt and debt service for countries implementing economic reforms. This article analyzes the structure of the financial packages that followed this change in approach and considers their impact on countries and their creditors.
Economic consequences of continued U.S. external deficit
Financial implications of the U.S. external deficit
Determinants and impacts of sovereign credit ratings
In this article, we present the first systematic analysis of the sovereign credit ratings of the two leading agencies, Moody's and Standard & Poor's (S&P). We find that the ordering of risks they imply is broadly consistent with macroeconomic fundamentals. While the agencies cite a large number of criteria in their assignment of sovereign ratings, a regression using only eight factors explains more than 90 percent of the cross-sectional variation in the ratings. In particular, a country's rating appears largely determined by its per capita income, external debt burden, inflation experience, ...
Capital flows & current account deficits in the 1990s: why did Latin America & East Asian countries respond differently?
The return of private capital to highly indebted less-developed countries (LDCs) in the late 1980s was accompanied by widening current account deficits in the recipient countries, which were primarily attributed to a consumption boom in Latin America and an investment surge in East Asia. Interpreting the return as an increase in the external debt ceiling, the maximum amount that can be borrowed, this paper analyzes and compares the different response of the two regions using the conceptual framework of a borrowing-constrained agent. According to it, an increase in the debt ceiling can reduce ...
Perspectives on U.S. external deficits
The paper examines the evolution of U.S. external balances since 1980 and considers various explanations for the persistence of external deficits in the late 1980s and the 1990s. It also offers a general assessment of the medium-term prospects for U.S. current account deficits. The review of evidence indicates that the huge increase in U.S. external deficits over 1980-86 was largely driven by an upward shift in Federal fiscal deficits and that lower Federal deficits together with the dollar depreciation played a crucial role in improving external balances during the second half of the 1980s. ...