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By Silvia Pepino

This ebook offers an unique and well timed perception into the function that the household and overseas political economic system performed within the Eurozone sovereign debt difficulty, combining an cutting edge theoretical framework with in-depth bond marketplace research.

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Example text

Instead, we showed how the set of factors considered in sovereign risk pricing models should broaden when investors’ perceptions of a sovereign as de facto risk-free are called into question. , 1992). In fact, the default of a government has important distributional consequences (basically favouring future taxpayers or the beneficiaries of public spending at the expense of bondholders), and, as such, its likelihood cannot appropriately be assessed in abstraction from the political sphere. This recognition implies that political factors should figure among the additional variables considered by investors when assessing sovereign risk in periods of fiscal stress.

3 Evolving sovereign risk analysis Taking a step further and applying this framework more specifically to our interest in sovereign risk pricing leads to a rejection of a static distinction between developed and emerging market economies as an invariable determinant of investors’ choice of valuation models. While the distinction may hold for extended periods of time, a predetermined classification of this type may not hold forever. Specifically, when outright default is perceived as a real possibility, developed democracies may be analysed through lenses more similar to those normally reserved for emerging market economies.

In the Eurozone, the political decision really happens on two levels: first at the national level, and second at the EMU level. Indeed, in the face of a material risk of default by a member country, EMU partners face the decision of whether to bear the cost of a bail-out of the country in question, or to suffer the possible spillovers that the default of a member country would imply for other members or for EMU (or even for the EU project) as a whole. 21 Before the Eurozone sovereign debt crisis, the economics literature generally assumed that the rules set by the Maastricht Treaty would be entirely credible and would not be the object of revision or re-interpretation.

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