Kirill Shakhnovis a Lecturer in the School of Economics at the University of Surrey.
Growth, and Development
Research Methods I (ECOM063)
Several countries have already introduced restrictions on trading of cryptocurrencies, and many more are evaluating whether to follow suit. We document an unprecedented drop in trading volume on the Chinese cryptocurrency market after a recent regulatory change by the Chinese authorities that severely restricted bitcoin trading. This paper shows how changes in domestic regulation not only have large effects on the domestic cryptocurrency market but also produce large international spillovers. Specifically, we observe a large increase in trading volume and relative bitcoin prices in exchange for Korean won, Japanese yen, and U.S. dollars, and on Chinese peer-to-peer exchanges.
At a given point in time, bitcoin prices are different on exchanges located in different countries, or against different currencies. While existing literature attributes the largest price differences to frictions, like market segmentation, trading platforms advertize how to execute trades based on this information. We provide a novel risk-based explanation of these price differences for a sample containing the most reputable exchanges and after accounting for all transaction costs and limitations to trade. Bitcoin prices for more " expensive " pairs are riskier because they depreciate more in bad times for cryptocurrency investors, when aggregate liquidity and investor sentiment are lower.
The COVID-19 pandemic causes sharp reductions in economic output and sharp increases in government expenditures. These increase the riskiness of sovereign debts, especially in emerging economies. This paper proposes a framework to study debt sustainability. The economy is subject to productivity and expenditure shock. The government sets distortionary labour taxes and decides whether to repay its past domestic and foreign obligations. Foreign default is more likely after a negative productivity shock, while domestic default is more likely after a negative expenditure shock. This mechanism finds support in the data. Recent proposals that would ease the burden of foreign debt after COVID-19 would not prevent a wave of domestic defaults.
This paper focuses on emerging market government bonds issued in local currency with different maturities. Foreign investors face interest rate, currency, and credit risks. We consider the entire term structure of carry trade returns and find that, while the default premium does not contribute to carry trade strategies, the contribution of interest rate risk, captured by the term premium, is large and increases with maturity. We introduce default risk in an otherwise standard affine model; we show that the volatility of the permanent component of the SDFs must be different across emerging markets in order to match these stylized facts. (JEL F31, F34, G15)
The rapid growth of US financial services coupled with rapid increases in wealth inequality have been focusing policy debate as to the function of the financial sector and on its social desirability as a whole. I propose a heterogeneous agent model with asymmetric information and matching frictions that produces a tradeoff between finance and entrepreneurship. By becoming bankers, talented agents efficiently match investors with entrepreneurs, but extract excessive informational rents due to contract incompleteness. Thus the financial sector is inefficiently large in equilibrium, and this inefficiency increases with wealth inequality. The estimated model with time variation in the banker capacity accounts for the simultaneous growth of wealth inequality and the financial sector in the US. The endogenous feedback between inequality and the size of the financial sector is quantitatively important.