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Returns to Investing in Sovereign Debt: a Response to Alvarez Nogal and Chamley

Mauricio Drelichman and Hans-Joachim Voth

Economics working papers from Vancouver School of Economics

Abstract: Alvarez-Nogal and Chamley (2015) analyze one debt contract signed by lenders to Philip II, previously discussed in Drelichman and Voth (2014). They re-examine cash flows and challenge our interpretation of this particular contract’s profitability. A closer look reveals that the alleged differences between their and our calculations simply reflect the use of conservative assumptions on our part, which systematically biased estimates of profitability downwards – as good scholarship requires if one is to argue that high profits were one of the main reasons why people lent to Philip II. We also question their use and reading of archival documents, as well as their use of basic financial economics. Finally, we document a continuing pattern of academic misconduct, including plagiarism, the misrepresentation of our findings, and the complete fabrication of a quote in order to discredit our work.

Keywords: sovereign debt; rate of return; Philip II; early modern Spain; plagiarism (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: N24 N44 G13 H63 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Pages: 8 pages
Date: 2015-09-02, Revised 2015-09-02
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-his
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