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Thomas Elkjaer, Jannick Damgaard, and Emmanuel O. Kumah
This paper analyzes the seven valuation methods for unlisted direct investment equity included in the recently adopted IMF Balance of Payments and International Investment Position Manual, Sixth Edition (BPM6). Based on publicly available Danish data, we test the three methods that are generally applicable and find that the choice of valuation method and estimation technique can have a highly significant impact on the international investment position, pointing to the need for further harmonization. The results show that the price-to-book value method generates more robust market value estimates than the price-to-earnings method. This finding suggests that the valuation basis for the forthcoming Coordinated Direct Investment Survey - own funds at book value -will provide useful information for compiling the international investment position.
Mr. Luis Catão and Mr. Allan Timmermann
A perennial question in international finance is to what extent stock returns are influenced by country-location, as opposed to industry-affiliation, factors. This paper develops a novel methodology to measure these effects, in which portfolios mimicking "pure" country and industry factors are first constructed and their joint dynamics then modeled as regime-switching processes. Estimation using global firm-level data allows us to identify well-defined volatility states over the past thirty years and shows that the contribution of the industry factor becomes systematically more prominent during high global volatility states, while the country factor contribution declines. Using the model's estimates, we find that portfolio diversification possibilities vary considerably across economic states.
Mr. Athanasios Vamvakidis
Should a closed economy open its trade to all countries or limit itself to participation in regional trade agreements (RTAs)? Based on time-series evidence for a data set for 1950-92, this paper estimates and compares the growth performance of countries that liberalized broadly and those that joined an RTA. The comparisons show that economies grew faster after broad liberalization, both in the short and long run, but slower after participation in an RTA. Economies also had higher investment shares after broad liberalization, but lower ones after joining an RTA. The policy implications support broad liberalization.
Mr. Tamim Bayoumi and Mr. Barry J. Eichengreen
This paper considers the impact on trade of preferential arrangements in Europe since the 1950s. Using a first difference version of the gravity model, we find that the EEC and EFTA altered the pattern of international trade. We also find evidence of trade diversion in several cases, notably that of the EEC in the 1960s.