EconPapers    
Economics at your fingertips  
 

Public Debt Sustainability

Xavier Debrun (), Jonathan Ostry (), Tim Willems and Charles Wyplosz ()

No 14010, CEPR Discussion Papers from C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers

Abstract: Why can Japan sustain debts above 200 percent of GDP, while Ukraine defaulted on its debt when it was 30 percent of GDP? Answering that question is challenging. First, debt sustainability does not easily translate into operational concepts and indicators. Second, servicing the debt is a strategic decision, the result of a cost-benefit analysis. Thus markets can always, for good or bad reasons, question governments' commitment to face their financial obligations. Third, uncertainty around public debt developments is large and difficult to model. Fourth, not all debts are born equal, as the currency composition, maturity structure, type of creditor and ownership of the debt affect exposure to rollover and liquidity risks. The paper surveys the knowns and unknowns of debt sustainability, including the tools helping us to understand vulnerabilities and to inform our judgment. Instead of embarking on the impossible mission to build a holistic, consistent and broadly-accepted debt-sustainability framework for practitioners, we take the more modest approach to review some of the key economic principles and statistical methods that form today's leading practice in debt sustainability assessments.

Keywords: debt sustainability analysis; default; Willingness to pay (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: H62 H63 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2019-09
References: View references in EconPapers View complete reference list from CitEc
Citations: Track citations by RSS feed

Downloads: (external link)
http://www.cepr.org/active/publications/discussion_papers/dp.php?dpno=14010 (application/pdf)
CEPR Discussion Papers are free to download for our researchers, subscribers and members. If you fall into one of these categories but have trouble downloading our papers, please contact us at subscribers@cepr.org

Related works:
This item may be available elsewhere in EconPapers: Search for items with the same title.

Export reference: BibTeX RIS (EndNote, ProCite, RefMan) HTML/Text

Persistent link: https://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:14010

Ordering information: This working paper can be ordered from
http://www.cepr.org/ ... rs/dp.php?dpno=14010

Access Statistics for this paper

More papers in CEPR Discussion Papers from C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers Centre for Economic Policy Research, 33 Great Sutton Street, London EC1V 0DX.
Bibliographic data for series maintained by ().

 
Page updated 2019-12-07
Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:14010