NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

Lending Booms: Latin America and the World

Pierre-Olivier Gourinchas, Rodrigo Valdes, Oscar Landerretche

NBER Working Paper No. 8249
Issued in April 2001
NBER Program(s):   IFM

Recent theories of crisis put lending booms at the root of financial collapses. Yet lending booms may be a natural consequence of economic development and fluctuations. So are lending booms dangerous? In this paper, we investigate empirically this question using a broad sample of lending boom episodes over 40 years, with a special eye for Latin America. Our results indicate that (1) lending booms are often associated with (i) a domestic investment boom; (ii) an increase in domestic interest rates; (iii) a worsening of the current account; (iv) a declines in reserves; (v) a real appreciation; (vi) a decline in output growth, (2) 'typical' lending booms do not increase substantially the vulnerability of the banking sector or the balance of payments. Comparing Latin America and the rest of the world, we find that Latin America lending booms make the economy considerably more volatile and vulnerable to financial and balance of payment crisis.

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Document Object Identifier (DOI): 10.3386/w8249

Published: Pierre-Olivier Gourinchas & Rodrigo Valdes & Oscar Landerretche, 2001. "Lending Booms: Latin America and the World," Journal of LACEA Economia, LACEA - LATIN AMERICAN AND CARIBBEAN ECONOMIC ASSOCIATION. citation courtesy of

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