Both sides of the institutions and growth debate have resorted largely to microeconometric techniques in testing hypotheses. In this paper, I build a panel structural vector autoregression (SVAR) model for a short panel of 119 countries over 10 years and find support for the institutions hypothesis. Controlling for individual fixed effects, I find that exogenous shocks to a proxy for institutional quality have a positive and statistically significant effect on GDP per capita. On average, a 1 percent shock in institutional quality leads to a peak 1.7 percent increase in GDP per capita after six years. Results are robust to using a different proxy for institutional quality. There are different dynamics for advanced economies and developing countries. This suggests diminishing returns to institutional quality improvements.
This paper presents an alternative method for calculating debt targets using the debt intolerance literature of Reinhart, Rogoff, and Savastano (2003) and Reinhart and Rogoff (2009). The methodology presented improves on the previous papers by using a dynamic panel approach, correcting for endogeneity in the regressors and basing the calculation of debt targets on credit ratings, a more objective criteria. In addition the study uses a new data base on general government debt covering 120 countries over 21 years. The paper suggests a ranking of Central America, Panama, and Dominican Republic (CAPDR) countries in terms of debt intolerance - an index which could be used to further investigate the main components of debt intolerance.
We develop a new public domestic debt (DD) database covering 93 low-income countries and emerging markets over the 1975-2004 period to estimate the growth impact of DD. Moderate levels of non-inflationary DD, as a share of GDP and bank deposits, are found to exert a positive overall impact on economic growth. Granger-causality regressions suggest support for a variety of channels: improved monetary policy; broader financial market development; strengthened domestic institutions/accountability; and enhanced private savings and financial intermediation. There is some evidence that, above a ratio of 35% percent of bank deposits, DD begins to undermine growth, lending credence to traditional crowding out and bank efficiency concerns. Importantly, the growth contribution of DD is higher if it is marketable, bears positive real interest rates and is held outside the banking system. Working Papers describe research in progress by the author(s) and are published to elicit comments and to further debate.
This paper extends my previous work by examining the relationship between monetary policy and exchange market pressure (EMP) in 32 emerging market countries. EMP is a gauge of the severity of crises, and part of this paper specifically analyzes crisis periods. Two variables gauge the stance of monetary policy: the growth of central bank domestic credit and the interest differential (domestic versus U.S. dollar). Evidence suggests that monetary policy plays an important role in currency crises. And, in most countries the shocks to monetary policy affect EMP in the direction predicted by traditional approaches: tighter money reduces EMP.