DP8173 Bilateral Financial Linkages and Global Imbalances: A View on The Eve of the Financial Crisis

Author(s): Gian Maria Milesi-Ferretti, Francesco Strobbe, Natalia Tamirisa
Publication Date: December 2010
Keyword(s): Capital flows, Global imbalances, International financial integration
JEL(s): F31, F32
Programme Areas: International Macroeconomics
Link to this Page: cepr.org/active/publications/discussion_papers/dp.php?dpno=8173

We present a novel and comprehensive dataset of bilateral gross and net external positions in various financial instruments for the main advanced and emerging economies and regions, designed to improve our understanding of cross-border financial linkages. The data show no strong correspondence between country or region pairs with the largest gross versus net external positions, and the importance of international financial centers, including offshore centers, in intermediating financial flows. We also highlight some important data gaps in completing a network of cross-border holdings, related to the limited available information on the size and geographical pattern of external claims and liabilities of offshore centers, oil exporters, and other mostly emerging markets.