Financial Regulation, Financial Globalization and the Synchronization of Economic Activity
We analyze the impact of financial globalization on business cycle synchronization utilizing a proprietary database on banks' international exposure for industrialized countries during 1978- 2006. Theory makes ambiguous predictions and identification has been elusive due to lack of bilateral time-varying financial linkages data. In contrast to conventional wisdom and previous empirical studies, we identify a strong negative effect of banking integration on output synchronization, conditional on global shocks and country-pair heterogeneity. Similarly, we show divergent economic activity as a result of higher integration using an exogenous de-jure measure of integration based on financial regulations that harmonized segmented EU markets.
This paper was revised on December 5, 2011