Some scholars argue that the free movement of capital across borders enhances welfare; others claim it represents a clear peril, especially for emerging nations. In Capital Controls and Capital Flows in Emerging Economies, an esteemed group of contributors examines both the advantages and the pitfalls of restricting capital mobility in these emerging nations.
In the aftermath of the East Asian currency crises of 1997, the authors consider mechanisms that eight countries have used to control capital inflows and evaluate their effectiveness in altering the maturity of the resulting external debt and reducing macroeconomic vulnerability. This volume is essential reading for all those interested in emerging nations and the costs and benefits of restricting international capital flows.
The 1990s witnessed several acute currency crises among developing nations that invariably spread to other nearby at-risk countries. These episodes—in Mexico, Thailand, South Korea, Russia, and Brazil—were all exacerbated by speculative foreign investments and high-volume movements of capital in and out of those countries. Insufficient domestic controls and a sluggish international response further undermined these economies, as well as the credibility of external oversight agencies like the International Monetary Fund. This timely volume examines the correlation between volatile capital mobility, currency instability, and the threat of regional contagion, focusing particular attention on the emergent economies of Latin America, Southeast Asia, and Eastern Europe.
Together these studies offer a new understanding of the empirical relationship between capital flows, international trade, and economic performance, and also afford key insights into realms of major policy concern.
"The rise of global financial markets in the last decades of the twentieth century was premised on one fundamental idea: that capital ought to flow across country borders with minimal restriction and regulation. Freedom for capital movements became the new orthodoxy.
In an intellectual, legal, and political history of financial globalization, Rawi Abdelal shows that this was not always the case. Transactions routinely executed by bankers, managers, and investors during the 1990s—trading foreign stocks and bonds, borrowing in foreign currencies—had been illegal in many countries only decades, and sometimes just a year or two, earlier.
How and why did the world shift from an orthodoxy of free capital movements in 1914 to an orthodoxy of capital controls in 1944 and then back again by 1994? How have such standards of appropriate behavior been codified and transmitted internationally? Contrary to conventional accounts, Abdelal argues that neither the U.S. Treasury nor Wall Street bankers have preferred or promoted multilateral, liberal rules for global finance. Instead, European policy makers conceived and promoted the liberal rules that compose the international financial architecture. Whereas U.S. policy makers have tended to embrace unilateral, ad hoc globalization, French and European policy makers have promoted a rule-based, “managed” globalization. This contest over the character of globalization continues today."
As corporations search for new production sites, governments compete furiously using location subsidies and tax incentives to lure them. Yet underwriting big business can have its costs: reduction in economic efficiency, shifting of tax burdens, worsening of economic inequalities, or environmental degradation.
Competing for Capital is one of the first books to analyze competition for investment in order to suggest ways of controlling the effects of capital mobility. Comparing the European Union's strict regulation of state aid to business with the virtually unregulated investment competition in the United States and Canada, Kenneth P. Thomas documents Europe's relative success in controlling—and decreasing—subsidies to business, even while they rise in the United States.
Thomas provides an extensive history of the powers granted to the EU's governing European Commission for controlling subsidies and draws on data to show that those efforts are paying off. In reviewing trends in North America, he offers the first comprehensive estimate of U.S. subsidies to business at all levels to show that the United States is a much higher subsidizer than it portrays itself as being.
Thomas then suggests what we might learn from the European experience to control the effects of capital mobility—not only within or between states, but also globally, within NAFTA and the World Trade Organization as well. He concludes with policy recommendations to help promote international cooperation and cross-fertilization of ways to control competition for investment.
This book is a major contribution exploring the policy options available for developing and emerging economies in response to the global economic crises.
Written by a highly respected development economist, the book gives a clear-eyed account of the issues particular to these countries and critically evaluates different policy approaches, including reforms in financial, monetary and trade policies. Informed by deep scholarship as well as practical experience, Yilmaz Akyüz draws on empirical data, historical context and theoretical expertise, with special attention paid to issues such as the role of the International Monetary Fund and China.
The Financial Crisis and the Global South is a landmark book that will be of interest to practitioners, scholars, theorists and students of economics and development studies.
Capital mobility is a double-edged sword for emerging economies, as governments must weigh the benefits of investment against the potential economic costs and political consequences of currency crises, devaluations, and instability. Financial Markets Volatility and Performance in Emerging Markets addresses the delicate balance between capital mobility and capital controls as developing countries navigate the convoluted global network of private investors, hedge funds, large corporations, and international institutions such as the International Monetary Fund.
A group of experts here examine rapidly globalizing financial markets with regard to capital flows and crises, domestic credit, international financial integration, and economic policy. Featuring detailed analyses and cross-national comparisons of countries such as Brazil, Argentina, Uruguay, and Korea, this book will shape economists’ and policymakers’ understanding of the effectiveness of restrictions on capital mobility in the world’s most fragile economies.
Globalization and Poverty
Edited by Ann Harrison University of Chicago Press, 2007 Library of Congress HC79.P6G664 2007 | Dewey Decimal 339.46
Over the past two decades, the percentage of the world’s population living on less than a dollar a day has been cut in half. How much of that improvement is because of—or in spite of—globalization? While anti-globalization activists mount loud critiques and the media report breathlessly on globalization’s perils and promises, economists have largely remained silent, in part because of an entrenched institutional divide between those who study poverty and those who study trade and finance.
Globalization and Poverty bridges that gap, bringing together experts on both international trade and poverty to provide a detailed view of the effects of globalization on the poor in developing nations, answering such questions as: Do lower import tariffs improve the lives of the poor? Has increased financial integration led to more or less poverty? How have the poor fared during various currency crises? Does food aid hurt or help the poor?
Poverty, the contributors show here, has been used as a popular and convenient catchphrase by parties on both sides of the globalization debate to further their respective arguments. Globalization and Poverty provides the more nuanced understanding necessary to move that debate beyond the slogans.
International Capital Flows
Edited by Martin Feldstein University of Chicago Press, 1999 Library of Congress HG3891.I558 1999 | Dewey Decimal 332.042
Recent changes in technology, along with the opening up of many regions previously closed to investment, have led to explosive growth in the international movement of capital. Flows from foreign direct investment and debt and equity financing can bring countries substantial gains by augmenting local savings and by improving technology and incentives. Investing companies acquire market access, lower cost inputs, and opportunities for profitable introductions of production methods in the countries where they invest.
But, as was underscored recently by the economic and financial crises in several Asian countries, capital flows can also bring risks. Although there is no simple explanation of the currency crisis in Asia, it is clear that fixed exchange rates and chronic deficits increased the likelihood of a breakdown. Similarly, during the 1970s, the United States and other industrial countries loaned OPEC surpluses to borrowers in Latin America. But when the U.S. Federal Reserve raised interest rates to control soaring inflation, the result was a widespread debt moratorium in Latin America as many countries throughout the region struggled to pay the high interest on their foreign loans.
International Capital Flows contains recent work by eminent scholars and practitioners on the experience of capital flows to Latin America, Asia, and eastern Europe. These papers discuss the role of banks, equity markets, and foreign direct investment in international capital flows, and the risks that investors and others face with these transactions. By focusing on capital flows' productivity and determinants, and the policy issues they raise, this collection is a valuable resource for economists, policymakers, and financial market participants.
International Capital Flows in Calm and Turbulent Times analyzes the financial crises of the late 1990s and draws attention to the type of lenders and investors that triggered and deepened the crises. It concentrates on institutional investors and banks and provides detailed analysis of the countries most affected by the 1997-98 Asian financial crisis as well as the Czech Republic and Brazil. It also suggests necessary international financial reforms to make crises less likely.
The book is unique in its scrutiny of the type of lenders and investors that triggered and deepened the crises, focusing particularly on institutional investors and banks; allocation of their assets; the criteria used in this process; and the impact of the nature of the investor on the volatility of different types of capital flow. It addresses such questions as: What determines or triggers massive changes in perceptions and sentiment by different investors and leaders? To what extent does contagion spread not just among countries but between actors? What are the policy implications of this analysis? The book concludes by examining the asymmetries in the financial architecture discussions and implementation and by offering policy proposals.
The imbalanced, yet mutually beneficial, trading relationship between the United States and Asia has long been one of international finance’s most perplexing mysteries. Although the United States continues to post a substantial trade deficit—and China reaps the benefits of a surplus—the dollar has yet to sink in the face of ever-increasing account disparities. International Financial Issues in the Pacific Rim explains why the United States enjoys a seemingly symbiotic relationship with its trading partners despite stark inequities in the trade balance, especially with Asia. This timely and well-informed study also debunks the assumed link between economic openness and low inflation in the region, identifies the serious gap between academic and private-sector researchers’ understanding of exchange rate volatility, and analyzes the liberalization of Asian capital accounts. International Financial Issues in the Pacific Rim will have broad implications for global trade and economic policy issues in Asia and beyond.
As the globalization of financial markets continues, we urgently need to understand the crises that have plagued these markets and the policies best suited to preventing such crises in the future. In this book, a prominent group of economists and policymakers blend conceptual analysis and policy discussion in seven well-integrated papers, analyzing the nature of capital flows, alternative exchange-rate regimes, and the roles of international financial institutions.
After a guided tour by the editor and a historical exploration, some of the world's leading theorists and policy analysts examine the benefits and pitfalls of capital movements and controls. In the second portion, papers examine the recent experiences of Argentina and Mexico, with Charles Calomiris—whose proposals for a new world financial architecture have elicited wide attention—contributing a response. The volume concludes with a roundtable discussion of the report of the International Financial Institutions Advisory Commission, in which the chair of the commission, Allan H. Meltzer, both comments on the report and responds to questions about it.
The material presented here will become a standard reference for analysts, policymakers, and the interested general public.
Leonardo Auernheimer, Matthew Bishop, Michael D. Bordo, Charles Calomiris, Guillermo A. Calvo, Augustin Carstens, Michael P. Dooley, Pablo E. Guidotti, T. Britton Harris, John P. Lipsky, Guillermo Ortiz Martinez, Allan H. Meltzer, Andrew Powell, Rene Stulz, Carl E. Walsh
This volume explores East Asia's macroeconomic experience in the 1980s and the economic impact of East Asia's growth on the rest of the world. The authors explore the causes of capital flows, changes in trade balances, and exchange rate fluctuations in East Asia and their effects on other countries.
These fourteen papers are organized around four themes: the overall determinants of growth and trading relations in the East Asian region; monetary policies in relation to capital controls and capital accounts; the impact of exchange rate behavior on industrial structure; and the potential for greater regional integration. The contributors examine interactions among exchange rate movements, trade balances, and capital flows; how government monetary policy affects capital flows; the effect of exchange rates on industrial structure, inventories, and prices; and the extent of regional integration in East Asia.
Multilevel structures are becoming increasingly characteristic of the world in which we live. This book is a unique study of policy making in a multilevel political system extending from the national to the international level. Taking as its subject the process of financial market reforms that took place following the recent financial crisis, it brings together an international group of renowned social scientists to explore the interplay between international organizations, European authorities, and regulators in the United States, the United Kingdom, and Germany in global financial decision making. Contributors thoroughly explore a small set of reform issues—including bank structure, bank capital, resolution, and over-the-counter trading of derivatives—to provide a detailed view of the vertical and horizontal interactions between these actors as related to a set of key questions: Are those states affected by the crisis adopting internationally negotiated regulations? Or are they instead determining the European and international reform agenda? Are the agreed upon policies contributing to greater harmonization of financial regulation in a multilevel political system? Or is the process being dominated by differing national interests?
Recent crises in emerging markets have been heavily driven by balance-sheet or net-worth effects. Episodes in countries as far-flung as Indonesia and Argentina have shown that exchange rate adjustments that would normally help to restore balance can be destabilizing, even catastrophic, for countries whose debts are denominated in foreign currencies. Many economists instinctually assume that developing countries allow their foreign debts to be denominated in dollars, yen, or euros because they simply don't know better.
Presenting evidence that even emerging markets with strong policies and institutions experience this problem, Other People's Money recognizes that the situation must be attributed to more than ignorance. Instead, the contributors suggest that the problem is linked to the operation of international financial markets, which prevent countries from borrowing in their own currencies. A comprehensive analysis of the sources of this problem and its consequences, Other People's Money takes the study one step further, proposing a solution that would involve having the World Bank and regional development banks themselves borrow and lend in emerging market currencies.
The volume of capital flows between industrial and developing countries has grown dramatically in the past decade and has become a major issue in a world that is increasingly "globalized." Here Takatoshi Ito and Anne O. Krueger, two leading experts on this topic, have assembled a group of scholars who address different types of capital flows—bank lending, bonds, direct foreign investment—and the implications they hold for economic performance. With its particular focus on the Asian financial crises, this work presents a new model for policy makers everywhere in thinking about the role of private capital flows.
The growth of global finance since 1960 constitutes one of the most important transformations in social relations during the twentieth century. Using historical, statistical, and graphical techniques, State Institutions, Private Incentives, and Global Capital examines three important aspects of this phenomenal shift in the international political economy. First, Andrew Sobel explores the reawakening of the international financial markets, mapping their extraordinary transformation since the early 1960s and discussing the role of politics in that metamorphosis. The author then offers a fresh understanding of the systematic differences in access for borrowers in this rapidly transforming and expanding global capital pool. He then demonstrates the influence of political factors in producing differential access to the global capital pool. Showing how the character and stability of a country's political system affects investors's decisions to invest in that country, Sobel breaks new ground in understanding the basis for the frequent admonitions by the World Bank and others that a stable political and legal system are essential for states to attract significant foreign investment.
With the growing debate about the effect of financial interdependence on the ability of states to conduct economic policy and indeed to preserve their independence in the face of unprecedented economic linkages, this book will be of interest to political scientists and economists as well as policy makers concerned with the impact of financial globalization and the causes of differentials in access to capital.
Andrew C. Sobel is Assistant Professor of Political Science and Resident Fellow, Center in Political Economy, Washington University, St. Louis. He is the author of Domestic Choices, International Markets: Dismantling National Barriers and Liberalizing Securities Markets.