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  • Author: Rebeca de la Rocque Palis, Roberto Luis Olinto Ramos, Patrice Robitaille
  • Publication Date: 08-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: U.S. Government
  • Abstract: Revisions to GDP announcements in many countries are often large, and Faust, Rogers, and Wright (2003) have found that G-7 GDP revisions are predictable to varying degrees. In this paper, we extend FRW to study revisions to Brazilian GDP announcements. We document that revisions to Brazilian GDP are large relative to those of G-7 countries. Brazilian GDP revisions are also predictable, which is consistent with the view that GDP revisions correct errors in preliminary GDP rather than reflect news. However, GDP revisions are far from being entirely predictable. Although GDP revisions are largest only one year following the initial GDP release, those revisions are nearly unpredictable.
  • Topic: International Relations, Economics, International Trade and Finance
  • Political Geography: Brazil, South America
  • Author: Jane Ihrig, David Prior
  • Publication Date: 08-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: U.S. Government
  • Abstract: <p>This paper examines if the type of exchange rate used or size of the movement in the exchange rate matters in estimating exchange-rate exposure of U.S. nonfinancial multinationals. We find that switching from a broad trade-weighted exchange rate to a 2-digit SIC industry exchange rate increases the number of significantly exposed firms in a simple Jorion (1990) regression by 60 percent. Then separating crisis from non-crisis months we find additional evidence of exposure. Although the value of exposure does not change with the size of the exchange rate movement, we find some firms have significant exposure only in crisis periods while others have significant exposure only during normal fluctuations in exchange rates. All told, we find about 1 in 4 firms' returns is significantly affected by movement in the exchange rate between 1995 and 1999. </p><blockquote><p> </p> </blockquote><p> </p><p> </p>
  • Topic: International Relations, Economics, International Trade and Finance
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Publication Date: 08-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: U.S. Government
  • Abstract: This Intelligence Community Assessment (ICA) was requested by Secretary of Health and Human Services Tommy Thompson and Ambassador Jack Chow, Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for International Health Affairs. It highlights the evolution of Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) and the potential implications of the disease for the United States under several scenarios; this paper does not attempt to provide a scientific assessment of the epidemiology of SARS. Even though SARS has infected and killed far fewer people than other common infectious diseases such as influenza, malaria, tuberculosis, and HIV/AIDS, it has had a disproportionately large economic and political impact because it spread in areas with broad international commercial links and received intense media attention as a mysterious new illness that seemed able to go anywhere and hit anyone.
  • Topic: International Relations, Human Welfare, Poverty, Third World
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Publication Date: 08-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: U.S. Government
  • Abstract: Sea basing is a critical capability for the United States in a world where flexible, quick-response military action will be required in areas far from fixed bases available or suitable for American military use. The seabase replaces or augments the fixed, in-theater airports and seaports, on which past military operations have focused and depended, with a maneuverability facility at sea - a mobile base of operations, command center, logistics node and transportation hub. A commander can place a seabase where and when he chooses to exploit enemy weaknesses and employ the element of surprise, confusing enemy defensive preparations. A seabase can be a center for reconstitution and redeployment of forces in succeeding stages of complex operations.
  • Topic: Defense Policy, Development, Science and Technology
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Publication Date: 08-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: U.S. Government
  • Abstract: U.S. national security leaders face a complex, dynamic set of demands in protecting the interests of the United States and its allies. Three key trends shape the nature and capability of the military forces required to meet these demands: 1. The limited ability to predict when, where, and under what conditions we will need to commit U.S. military forces, particularly for smaller-scale contingencies; 2. The need for forces that enjoy dominant superiority over potential adversaries, not simply an incremental advantage over an aggregate set of threats; and 3. The rapid development and global availability of information technology (IT). Taken together, these trends underscore the need for enhanced joint capabilities.
  • Topic: Defense Policy, Development, Science and Technology
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Author: John G. Ikenberry
  • Publication Date: 07-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: U.S. Government
  • Abstract: American global power – military, economic, technological, cultural, and political – is one of the great realities of our age. Never before has one country been so powerful and unrivaled. The United States began the 1990s as the world's only superpower and its advantages continued to grow through the decade. After the Cold War, the United States reduced its military spending at a slower rate than other countries and its economy grew at a faster pace. The globalization of the world economy has reinforced American economic and political dominance. No ideological challengers are in site. More recently, in response to terrorist attacks, the United States has embarked on a massive military buildup. In the recent National Security Strategy, the Bush administration has articulated an ambitious and provocative global military role for the United States in confronting new-age threats. Overall, American power advantages are multidimensional, unprecedented, and unlikely to disappear any time soon. The world has taken notice of these developments. Indeed, the post-Cold War rise of American power -- what might be called the rise of American "unipolarity" -- has unsettled world politics. Governments everywhere are worried about the uncertainties and insecurities that appear to flow from such extreme and unprecedented disparities of power. The shifting global security environment – triggered by the terrorist attacks of September 11th –also has conspired to upset old relationships and expectations. The American invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq have put American power on display and raised far-reaching questions about the use of force, alliances, weapons of mass destruction, sovereignty and interventionism. The world is in the midst of a great geopolitical adjustment process. Governments are trying to figure out how an American-centered unipolar order will operate. How will the United States use its power? Will a unipolar world be built around rules and institutions or the unilateral exercise of American power? This global worry about how a unipolar world will operate – in which the most basic questions about the character of world politics are at stake, namely, who benefits and who commands – is the not-so-hidden subtext of all the recent controversies in America's relations with the rest of the world. The question posed in this report is: how are the major countries around the world responding to American global preeminence? Overall, strategies and policies are mostly still in flux around the world. Responses up to now have been mostly ad hoc. Governments are learning, adapting, negotiating, and reacting – thus it is not possible to identify fixed "strategies of response." This report seeks to help us understand these evolving responses in two ways: first, it will provide conceptual tools to identify and track strategic responses by major states to American preeminence, and second, it will offer some preliminary characterizations of the patterns of response, particularly by Western Europe, Russia, and China. This report might be seen as a sort of "field guide" to global reactions rather than a definitive theoretical and empirical statement on the subject. I begin by offering a summary of the findings. After this, I look at the rise of American unipolar power and the variety of ways that American power is "experienced" around the world. In the next section, I survey the deeper sources and multifaceted character of American unipolar power. Next I explore the limits of the basic strategies of response to concentrated power – balancing, bandwagoning and binding. In the next section, I explore some of the emerging strategies that are appearing among the major countries. Finally, in the conclusion I return to the issue of unipolar power and rule-based order.
  • Topic: International Relations, Politics, Sovereignty
  • Political Geography: United States, America
  • Publication Date: 07-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: U.S. Government
  • Abstract: The Convention on Combating Bribery of Foreign Public Officials in International Business Transactions (Antibribery Convention) of the Organization of Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) is one of the most important instruments through which the U.S. government fights transnational corruption. The Convention obligates the Parties to criminalize bribery of foreign public officials in the conduct of international business. It is aimed at proscribing offers, promises or payments of bribes by companies based in the OECD signatory countries that engage in transactions in other countries.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Defense Policy, Economics
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Author: David C. Smith
  • Publication Date: 07-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: U.S. Government
  • Abstract: This paper examines the characteristics of loans to Japanese borrowers using a relatively unexplored, contract-specific data set. I find that Japanese banks charge less on loans to Japanese borrowers than do foreign banks, holding constant many of the risk characteristics of the borrower. Moreover, Japanese banks vary pricing less across these risks than do foreign banks, suggesting that Japanese banks tend not to distinguish good risks from bad. Taken together, the results suggest that problems at Japanese banks stem from the behavior of the banks themselves, not simply from poor economic conditions. I also document a significant shortening in the maturity structure of Japanese loans in the late 1990s.
  • Topic: Economics, Emerging Markets, International Trade and Finance
  • Political Geography: Japan, Israel
  • Author: Francis E. Warnock, Hali J. Edison
  • Publication Date: 07-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: U.S. Government
  • Abstract: We analyze a unique data set and uncover a remarkable result that casts a new light on the home bias phenomenon. The data are comprehensive, security-level holdings of emerging market equities by U.S. investors. We document, as expected, that at a point in time U.S. portfolios are tilted towards firms that are large, have fewer restrictions on foreign ownership, or are cross-listed on a U.S. exchange. The size of the cross-listing effect is striking. In contrast to the well-documented underweighting of foreign stocks, emerging market equities that are cross-listed on a U.S. exchange are incorporated into U.S. portfolios at full international CAPM weights. Our results suggest that information asymmetries play an important role in equity home bias and that the benefits of international risk sharing are limited to select firms.
  • Topic: Economics, Emerging Markets, International Trade and Finance
  • Political Geography: United States
  • Author: Francis E. Warnock, Hali J. Edison
  • Publication Date: 07-2003
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: U.S. Government
  • Abstract: We analyze capital flows to emerging markets in a framework that incorporates two quantitative measures of financial integration, the intensity of capital controls and the extent of cross-border listings, while controlling for traditional global (push) and country-specific (pull) factors. Two important results emerge. First, the cross-listing of an emerging market firm on a U.S. exchange is an important but short-lived capital flows event, suggesting that the cross-listed stock is in effect a new security that U.S. investors quickly bring into their portfolios. Second, the effect of financial liberalization on capital flows is more nuanced than is suggested by event studies: A reduction in capital controls results in increased inflows only when the controls were binding. Among the standard push and pull factors, global factors are important—slack U.S. economic activity is associated with increased flows to emerging markets—and U.S. investors appear to chase expected, but not past, returns.
  • Topic: Economics, Emerging Markets, International Trade and Finance
  • Political Geography: United States