NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
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Portfolio Diversification, Real Interest Rates, and the Balance of Payments

Carol L. Osler

NBER Working Paper No. 2441
Issued in November 1987
NBER Program(s):The International Trade and Investment Program, The International Finance and Macroeconomics Program

The paper shows that differences in real interest rates across countries can arise even with perfect competition and fully integrated international capital markets. Specifically, we find that factor returns will differ across countries which are identical except for differences in technological riskiness, overall productivity, or labor force size. We also show that differences across countries in technological riskiness, in risk aversion, in population size and in overall productivity will lead to a non-zero current account in the steady state. Higher technological riskiness, greater risk aversion, and a larger population should be associated with a current account surplus. The analysis is carried out using a two-country Diamond overlapping-generations model in which technological uncertainty is reflected in factor returns.

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Document Object Identifier (DOI): 10.3386/w2441

Published: "Factor Prices Under Integrated Markets for Risky Capital" European Economic Review, Vol. 35, No. 6, pp. 89-107, (August 1991).

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