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Legal Enforcement, Public Supply of Liquidity and Sovereign Risk


Brutti, Filippo (2010). Legal Enforcement, Public Supply of Liquidity and Sovereign Risk. Working paper series / Institute for Empirical Research in Economics No. 464, University of Zurich.

Abstract

"Sovereign debt crises in emerging markets are usually associated with liquidity and banking crises within the economy. This connection is suggested by both anecdotical and empirical evidence. The conventional view is that the domestic financial turmoil is caused by foreign creditors' retaliation. Yet, there is no clear-cut evidence supporting the existence of 'classic' default penalties (e.g., trade sanctions or exclusion from international capital markets). This paper then proposes a novel mechanism linking sovereign defaults with liquidity and banking crises without any intervention of foreign creditors. The model considers a standard unwillingness-to-pay problem assuming that: (i) the enforcement of private contracts is limited and, as a result, public debt represents a source of liquidity; (ii) the government cannot discriminate between domestic and foreign agents. In this setting, the prospect of drying up the private sector's liquidity restores the ex-post incentive to pay of the government without any need to assume foreign penalties. Nonetheless, liquidity crises might arise when economic conditions deteriorate and the government chooses opportunistically to default in order to avoid the repayment of foreign agents. The interaction between the enforcement friction and sovereign risk is then exploited to study the implications on international capital flows and legal and institutional domestic reforms."

"Sovereign debt crises in emerging markets are usually associated with liquidity and banking crises within the economy. This connection is suggested by both anecdotical and empirical evidence. The conventional view is that the domestic financial turmoil is caused by foreign creditors' retaliation. Yet, there is no clear-cut evidence supporting the existence of 'classic' default penalties (e.g., trade sanctions or exclusion from international capital markets). This paper then proposes a novel mechanism linking sovereign defaults with liquidity and banking crises without any intervention of foreign creditors. The model considers a standard unwillingness-to-pay problem assuming that: (i) the enforcement of private contracts is limited and, as a result, public debt represents a source of liquidity; (ii) the government cannot discriminate between domestic and foreign agents. In this setting, the prospect of drying up the private sector's liquidity restores the ex-post incentive to pay of the government without any need to assume foreign penalties. Nonetheless, liquidity crises might arise when economic conditions deteriorate and the government chooses opportunistically to default in order to avoid the repayment of foreign agents. The interaction between the enforcement friction and sovereign risk is then exploited to study the implications on international capital flows and legal and institutional domestic reforms."

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Working Paper
Communities & Collections:03 Faculty of Economics > Department of Economics
Working Paper Series > Institute for Empirical Research in Economics (former)
Dewey Decimal Classification:330 Economics
Language:English
Date:January 2010
Deposited On:29 Nov 2011 15:09
Last Modified:05 Apr 2016 15:08
Series Name:Working paper series / Institute for Empirical Research in Economics
ISSN:1424-0459
Official URL:http://www.econ.uzh.ch/wp.html
Permanent URL: http://doi.org/10.5167/uzh-51725

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