WorldCat Identities

Aizenman, Joshua

Works: 359 works in 1,665 publications in 1 language and 9,862 library holdings
Genres: History 
Roles: Author, Editor
Classifications: H62.5.U5, 338.542
Publication Timeline
Most widely held works by Joshua Aizenman
Managing economic volatility and crises : a practitioner's guide ( Book )
14 editions published between 2005 and 2010 in English and held by 323 WorldCat member libraries worldwide
"Over the past ten years, economic volatility has come into its own after being treated for decades as a secondary phenomenon in the business cycle literature. This book organizes empirical and policy results for economists and development policy practitioners into four parts: basic features, including the impact of volatility on growth and poverty; commodity price volatility; the financial sector's dual role as an absorber and amplifier of shocks; and the management and prevention of macroeconomic crises. The latter section includes a cross-country study, ease studies on Argentina and Russia, and lessons from the debt default episodes of the 1980s and 1990s."--BOOK JACKET
Financial versus monetary mercantilism-long-run view of large international reserves hoarding by Joshua Aizenman( )
17 editions published between 2006 and 2007 in English and held by 306 WorldCat member libraries worldwide
The sizable hoarding of international reserves by several East Asian countries has been frequently attributed to a modern version of monetary mercantilism -- hoarding international reserves in order to improve competitiveness. From a long-run perspective, manufacturing exporters in East Asia adopted financial mercantilism -- subsidizing the cost of capital -- during decades of high growth. They switched to hoarding large international reserves when growth faltered, making it harder to disentangle the monetary mercantilism from precautionary response to the heritage of past financial mercantilism. Monetary mercantilism also lowers the cost of hoarding, but may be associated with negative externalities leading to competitive hoarding
Contagion, bank lending spreads, and output fluctuations by Pierre-Richard Agénor( Book )
19 editions published between 1998 and 1999 in English and held by 178 WorldCat member libraries worldwide
A positive historical shock to external spreads can lead to an increase in domestic spreads and a reduction in the cyclical component of output. Shocks to external spreads immediately after the Mexican peso crisis had a sizable effect on movements in output and domestic interest rate spreads in Argentina
Financial sector inefficiencies and coordination failures : implications for crisis management by Pierre-Richard Agénor( Book )
14 editions published in 1999 in English and held by 158 WorldCat member libraries worldwide
In a country where financial intermediation is highly inefficient (with the enforcement costs of loan contracts very high, for example), or in one experiencing great volatility and large adverse shocks in output, the likelihood of an inefficient equilibrium is great. In East Asia it may be in the interests of both debtors and creditors to collectively reduce the face value of debt, to reduce inefficiencies in the financial sector
Savings and the terms of trade under borrowing constraints by Pierre-Richard Agénor( Book )
21 editions published between 1999 and 2000 in English and held by 133 WorldCat member libraries worldwide
When households face the possibility of borrowing constraints in bad times, favorable movements in the permanent component of the terms of trade may lead to higher rates of private savings
The credit crunch in East Asia : what can bank excess liquid assets tell us? by Pierre-Richard Agénor( Book )
19 editions published between 1999 and 2000 in English and held by 132 WorldCat member libraries worldwide
A two-step approach is used to assess the extent to which the credit crunch in East Asia was supply- or demand-driven. The results for Thailand suggest that the contraction in bank lending that accompanied the crisis was the result of supply factors
Volatility and the welfare costs of financial market integration by Pierre-Richard Agénor( Book )
15 editions published in 1998 in English and held by 131 WorldCat member libraries worldwide
Abstract: This paper examines the effect of volatility on the costs and benefits of financial market integration. The basic framework combines the costly state verification model and the contract enforceability approach. The welfare effects of financial market integration are assessed by comparing welfare under financial autarky and financial openness -- under which foreign banks, characterized by lower costs of intermediation and a lower markup rate, have free access to domestic capital markets. The analysis shows that financial integration may be welfare reducing if world interest rates under openness are highly volatile. The basic framework is then extended to consider the case of an upward-sloping domestic supply curve of funds and congestion externalities. It is shown, in particular, that opening the economy to unrestricted inflows of capital may magnify the welfare cost of existing distortions, such as congestion externalities or deposit insurance
Contagion and volatility with imperfect credit markets by Pierre-Richard Agénor( Book )
21 editions published in 1997 in English and held by 117 WorldCat member libraries worldwide
Abstract: This paper interprets contagion effects as a perceived increase (triggered by events occurring elsewhere) in the volatility of aggregate shocks impinging on the domestic economy. The implications of this approach are analyzed in a model with two types of credit market imperfections: domestic banks borrow at a premium on world capital markets, and domestic producers (whose demand for credit results from working capital needs) borrow at a premium from domestic banks which possess comparative advantage in monitoring the behavior of domestic agents. Financial intermediation spreads are shown to be determined by a markup that compensates for the expected cost of contract enforcement and state verification and for the expected revenue lost in adverse states of nature. Higher volatility of producers' productivity shocks increases both financial spreads and the producers' cost of capital, resulting in lower employment and higher incidence of default. The welfare effects of volatility are non-linear. Higher volatility does not impose any welfare cost for countries characterized by relatively low volatility and efficient financial intermediation. The adverse welfare effects are large (small) for countries that are at the threshold of full integration with international capital markets (close to financial autarky), that is, countries characterized by a relatively low (high) probability of default
Macroeconomic adjustment with segmented labor markets by Pierre-Richard Agénor( Book )
15 editions published in 1994 in English and held by 110 WorldCat member libraries worldwide
Abstract: This paper analyzes the macroeconomic effects of fiscal and labor market policies in a small open developing country. The basic framework considers an economy with a large informal production sector and a heterogeneous work force. The labor market is segmented as a result of efficiency considerations and minimum wage laws. The basic model is then extended to account for unemployment benefits, income taxation, and imperfect labor mobility across sectors. Under the assumption of perfect labor mobility, we show that a permanent reduction in government spending on nontraded goods leads in the long run to a depreciation of the real exchange rate, a fall in the market-clearing wage for unskilled labor, an increase in output of traded goods, and a lower stock of net foreign assets. A permanent reduction in the minimum wage for unskilled workers improves competitiveness, and expands the formal sector at the expense of the informal sector. Hence, in a two-sector economy in which the minimum wage is enforced only in the formal sector and wages in one segment of the labor market are competitively determined, efficiency wage considerations do not alter the standard neoclassical presumption. A reduction in unemployment benefits is also shown to have a positive effect on output of tradable goods by lowering both the level of efficiency wages and the employment rent of skilled workers
Privatization in emerging markets by Joshua Aizenman( Book )
11 editions published in 1998 in English and held by 102 WorldCat member libraries worldwide
Abstract: This paper evaluates the welfare implications of privatization in emerging market economies, in countries where policies are determined by the median voter. We show that privatization may lead to large efficiency gains by changing the menu of taxes. We illustrate this point with two examples. First, we consider privatization of import competing public enterprises. Reducing the public sector involvement in import competing activities is shown to lower the public sector's benefits from protection, reducing thereby the equilibrium tariff rate. The second example deals with social security privatization in an economy characterized by imperfect capital mobility, where the private sector may engage in capital flight. A small share of the capital owned by the middle class implies that the median voter would impose a tax on capital income that exceeds the efficient tax by a large margin, reflecting the beggar my (capitalist) neighbor' attitude. Social security privatization increases the equity position of the middle class, inducing the median voter to internalize a higher fraction of the costs of high taxes on capital, thereby reducing the capital tax rate. The indirect effects of privatization described in the paper are external to the privatized activity. Hence, these benefits are not accounted for in a conventional cost benefit assessment of the privatized projects. Our examples illustrate that ignoring these effects may lead one to underestimate the potential gains of privatization
Exchange rate flexibility, volatility, and the patterns of domestic and foreign direct investment by Joshua Aizenman( Book )
12 editions published between 1992 and 1993 in English and held by 91 WorldCat member libraries worldwide
This paper investigates the factors determining the impact of exchange rate regimes on the behavior of domestic investment and foreign direct investment (FDI). Producers may diversify internationally in order to increase the flexibility of production. We characterize the possible equilibria in a macro model that allows for the presence of a short-run Phillips curve. It is shown that a fixed exchange rate regime is more conductive to FDI relative to a flexible exchange rate, and this conclusion applies for both real and nominal shocks. If the dominant shocks are nominal (real) we will observe a negative (a positive) correlation between exchange rate volatility and the level of investment
Volatility and financial intermediation by Joshua Aizenman( Book )
11 editions published in 1997 in English and held by 89 WorldCat member libraries worldwide
Abstract: Following the Tequila period, its after-effects in Latin America and recent events in South East Asia, the effect of volatility on emerging market economies has become an important topic of research with the domestic financial intermediation process being advanced as one of the most important transmission mechanisms. At the same time there has been continued interest in issues related to imperfect information and rationing in credit markets. In this paper, we consider an economy where risk neutral banks provide intermediation services and risk neutral producers demand credit to finance their working capital needs. Our model blends costly state verification with imperfect enforcement power and, in this context of costly financial intermediation, we show that a weak legal system combined with high information verification costs leads to large, first-order effects of volatility on production, employment and welfare. A calibration illustrates that the semi-elasticity of welfare with respect to volatility is less than -1 for reasonable parameter values (i.e., a one percent increase in the coefficient of variation of productivity shocks would reduce welfare by more than one percent). We suggest that legal and information problems in the credit market may then be at the heart of the reason why volatility has profound effects on emerging market economies
Optimal tax and debt policy with endogenously imperfect creditworthiness by Joshua Aizenman( Book )
11 editions published in 1996 in English and held by 87 WorldCat member libraries worldwide
This paper shows that the patterns of optimal tax rates and borrowing in the presence of endogenous borrowing constraints differ considerably from the patterns observed with fully integrated capital markets. We study a developing country characterized by a costly tax collection. Its access to the international credit market is determined by the efficiency of the tax system and the relative bargaining power of creditors. Partial defaults induce a burden shifting' from bad to good states of nature, reducing the cost of borrowing, implying that a switch from no default to a partial default regime is associated with a borrowing boom. The switch to a partial default regime is associated with financial fragility, where small adverse changes in fundamentals lead to a large accumulation of debt. The tax rate exhibits strong counter-cyclical patterns in economies operating at the credit ceiling, whereas the tax rate exhibits strong pro-cyclical patterns in economies operating on the upward sloping portion of the supply of credit, where the risk premium is positive, and very little cyclical patterns in economies operating on the elastic portion of the supply of credit. We identify a volatility- debt curve for a given realization of output. With low debt, higher volatility tends to reduce borrowing. When volatility reaches a threshold, we observe a switch from a no default to a partial default regime, where a further rise in volatility increases borrowing and reduces present taxes
Why is inflation skewed? : a debt and volatility story by Joshua Aizenman( Book )
12 editions published in 1994 in English and held by 87 WorldCat member libraries worldwide
Abstract: This paper studies the patterns of inflation skewness in 56 countries. Monthly data suggests that inflation is positively skewed. We investigate linkages between skewness and non-linearity, showing that concavity (convexity) will lead to negative (positive) skewness if the independent variable is symmetrically distributed. We construct a public finance model for a developing country that uses inflation tax and external borrowing as the residual means for fiscal financing. The model predicts a convex dependency of inflation on output, where inflation skewness depends positively on inflation volatility, and external debt difficulties magnify the skewness. We conclude the paper with an assessment of the patterns of inflation between 1979-1993 for the 56 countries. Overall, the patterns are consistent with the predictions of the model
Wage dispersion and technical progress by Pierre-Richard Agénor( Book )
11 editions published in 1996 in English and held by 87 WorldCat member libraries worldwide
Abstract: Since the early 1980s, wage dispersion and the ratio of skilled to unskilled employment have increased significantly in several industrial countries. A number of economists have attributed these trends to skill-biased technical progress. This paper studies the wage and employment effects of technological changes of this type. The analysis is based on a model with a heterogeneous work force and a segmented labor market. Skill-biased technical progress is modeled as a shock that switches demand from unskilled to skilled labor in the primary, high-wage sector, while leaving the total demand for labor in that sector constant at initial wages. Such a shock reduces total employment in the primary sector, as the equilibrium increase in skilled labor employment is smaller than the fall in employment of unskilled labor. Efficiency factors are shown to magnify the adverse employment effects of pro-skilled technical change
International portfolio diversification with generalized expected utility preferences by Joshua Aizenman( Book )
12 editions published in 1997 in English and held by 86 WorldCat member libraries worldwide
This paper revisits the Home Bias Puzzle -- the relatively low interna- tional diversification of portfolios. We suggest that part of the diversifi- cation puzzle may be due to reliance on the conventional CAPM model as the benchmark predicting patterns of diversification. We compare the asset diver- sification patterns of agents who maximize a generalized expected utility (GEU) to the diversification of agents who maximize the conventional expected utility (EU). Specifically, we derive the patterns of diversification for agents who maximize a rank-dependent' expected utility, attaching more weight to bad' than to good' outcomes, in contrast to the probability weights used in a conventional expected utility maximization. We show that agents who maximize a GEU exhibit first order risk aversion and tend to refrain from di- versification in contrast to the diversification of agents who maximize the EU. For a given covariance structure we identify a cone of diversifica- tion -- the range of domestic and foreign yields leading to a positive demand for both equities. Greater downside risk aversion increases the threshold of yields leading to diversification, shifting the cone of diversification upwards and rightwards. Thus, greater downsiderisk aversion narrows the range of foreign yields leading to diversification for a given domestic yield. Ceteris paribus, greater downside risk aversion reduces the feasible hetero- geneity of normalized excess yields associated with diversification. Conse- quently, we argue that first order risk aversion should be added to the explanatory factors that account for the observed diversification patterns
Capital mobility in a second best world : moral hazard with costly financial intermediation by Joshua Aizenman( Book )
14 editions published between 1998 and 2001 in English and held by 86 WorldCat member libraries worldwide
Abstract: This paper studies the welfare effects of financial integration in the presence of moral hazard. Entrepreneurs face a trade off between risk and return. Banks may mitigate the resultant excessive risk by costly monitoring, where greater risk reduction requires more resources devoted to risk supervision. Hence, the excessive risk associated with moral hazard is endogenously determined. We show that a drop in banks' cost of funds increases the risk tolerated by banks in a competitive equilibrium. Similarly, less efficient intermediation technology (i.e. more costly risk monitoring), higher macroeconomic volatility, and a more generous deposit insurance all raise the riskiness of projects in a competitive equilibrium. Overborrowing would arise e insurance in circumstances where the cost of financial intermediation is relatively high, the banks' cost of funds is relatively low, and macroeconomic volatility is high. With relative scarcity of funds, financial integration is welfare reducing (enhancing) if the financial intermediation is relatively inefficient (efficient). The association between financial integration and welfare may be non-monotonic. For a large enough cost of financial intermediation, the dependence of welfare on the banks' cost of funds has an inverted U shape. For such an economy, financial integration and reforming the banking sector are complimentary policies, as the gain of each reform is magnified by the second. If one starts with a highly inefficient banking system, reforming it and improving its operation is a precondition for s
Investment in new activities and the welfare cost of uncertainty by Joshua Aizenman( Book )
10 editions published in 1995 in English and held by 83 WorldCat member libraries worldwide
Abstract: Recent literature has highlighted the importance of new activities in development and growth. It was shown that trade distortions such as tariffs are associated with first-order costs stemming from the induced drop in the formation of new activities. This paper demonstrates that uncertainty may induce similar costs. This argument is illustrated in the context of Romer's model of a dependent economy, where foreign direct investment is needed to enable the importation of capital goods and intermediate products used in domestic production. The present paper shows that uncertainty acts as an implicit tax on new activities, whose incidence is (in a certain sense) worse than that of a tariff in Romer's framework. As with a tariff, uncertainty inhibits the formation of new activities. Unlike the tariff, however, uncertainty does not benefit the government with revenue. The welfare cost of uncertainty applies also for a closed economy. The paper shows that uncertainty-averse entrepreneurs discount using a 'hurdle rate' that exceeds the risk-free interest rate. The gap between the two rates increases with the uncertainty embodied in the investment, being determined by the vagueness of the information and by the range of possible outcomes. Hence, growth may be inhibited by business uncertainty, where the 'rules of the game' for new activities are vague
Capital controls and financial crises by Joshua Aizenman( Book )
12 editions published between 1999 and 2001 in English and held by 82 WorldCat member libraries worldwide
Abstract: The purpose of this paper is to explain the reluctance of developing countries to open up their capital market to foreigners, and the conditions inducing an emerging market economy to switch its policies. We consider an economy characterized initially by a one-sided openness to the capital market domestic agents can borrow internationally, but foreign agents cannot hold domestic equity. We identify conditions under which the emerging market's capitalists would oppose financial reform. This would be the case if 'green field' investment by multinationals would bid up real wages, reducing thereby the rents of domestic capitalists. A financial crisis that raises the domestic interest rate and causes a real exchange rate depreciation may induce the emerging market's capitalists to support opening up the economy to FDI. This attitude switch is more likely to occur the greater the debt overhang, the lower the borrowing constraint, and the weaker the market power of foreign entrepreneurs. Even in these circumstances, the emerging market's capitalists would prefer a partial reform to a comprehensive one -- they would prefer to maintain the restrictions on 'green field' FDI
New activities, the welfare cost of uncertainty and investment policies by Joshua Aizenman( Book )
11 editions published in 1996 in English and held by 82 WorldCat member libraries worldwide
Abstract: This paper studies the effect of policy uncertainty on the formation of new activities in Romer's (1994) type of an economy, where productivity of labor increases with the number of capital goods. Adding a new capital good requires a capital specific set-up cost, invested prior to using the capital good. Agents are disappointment averse, putting greater utility weight on downside risk [as modeled by Gul (1991)]. Policy uncertainty is induced by the Disappointment aversion implies that investment, labor and capitalists' income drop at a rate proportional to the standard deviation of the tax rate. Hence, policy uncertainty induces first-order adverse effects, whereas policy uncertainty leads to second-order effects when consumers maximize the conventional expected utility. The adverse effects of policy uncertainty can be partially overcome by a proper investment policy. The paper interprets the tax concessions granted to multinationals as a commitment device that helps overcoming the adverse implications of policy uncertainty
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Alternative Names
Aizenman, J.
Aizenman, J. 1949-
Aizenman, J. (Joshua)
English (282)