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‘Original Sin’ in Latin America (2000-2015): Theory, Empirical Assessment and Alternatives.

Vinicius Diniz Moraes, Ettore Gallo, Maria Cristina Barbieri Goes


 The matter of the ‘original sin’, the inability to borrow abroad in domestic currency, came to the centre of the academic discussion after the dramatic episodes in Asia, Russia and Latin America. According to this international framework, this paper is an empirical analysis of ‘original sin’ for six Latin American countries based on the index (OSIN3) developed by Haussmann and Panizza (2003). This paper finds that the situation for some countries have been improving reflecting a reduction of the index. This fact could be related to recent economic policies policies related to an ‘abstinence’ rather than ‘redemption’, an attitude seen as a response to the debt crisis. Finally, the paper focuses on possible policy alternatives that could be adopted to overcome the ‘original sin’ phenomenon, it includes North-South and South-South cooperation and a multilateral arrangement. However, such alternatives are limited to feasibility mainly due to the turbulent political and economic scenario in the region.


Original sin; currency mismatches; debt; Latin America

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