Nagle, Peter Stephen Oliver

Prospects Group, The World Bank
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International macroeconomics, International finance, International debt
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Prospects Group, The World Bank
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Last updated January 31, 2023
Peter Nagle is a Senior Economist in the World Bank Group’s Prospects Group. His research interests cover debt, financial crises, and commodity markets. Previously, he worked at the Institute of International Finance and the International Directorate at the Bank of England.

Publication Search Results

Now showing 1 - 7 of 7
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    What Has Been the Impact of COVID-19 on Debt? Turning a Wave into a Tsunami
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2021-11) Kose, M. Ayhan ; Nagle, Peter ; Ohnsorge, Franziska ; Sugawara, Naotaka
    This paper presents a comprehensive analysis of the impact of COVID-19 on debt, puts recent debt developments and prospects in historical context, and analyzes new policy challenges associated with debt resolution. The paper reports three main results. First, even before the pandemic, a rapid buildup of debt in emerging market and developing economies—dubbed the “fourth wave” of debt—had been underway. Because of the sharp increase in debt during the pandemic-induced global recession of 2020, the fourth wave of debt has turned into a tsunami and become even more dangerous. Second, five years after past global recessions, global government debt continued to increase. In light of this historical record, and given large financing gaps and significant investment needs in many countries, debt levels will likely continue to rise in the near future. Third, debt resolution has become more complicated because of a highly fragmented creditor base, a lack of transparency in debt reporting, and a legacy stock of government debt without collective action clauses. National policy makers and the global community need to act rapidly and forcefully ensure that the fourth wave does not end with a string of debt crises in emerging market and developing economies as earlier debt waves did.
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    Debt and Financial Crises
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2020-01) Koh, Wee Chian ; Kose, M. Ayhan ; Nagle, Peter S. ; Ohnsorge, Franziska L. ; Sugawara, Naotaka
    Emerging market and developing economies have experienced recurrent episodes of rapid debt accumulation over the past fifty years. This paper examines the consequences of debt accumulation using a three-pronged approach: an event study of debt accumulation episodes in 100 emerging market and developing economies since 1970; a series of econometric models examining the linkages between debt and the probability of financial crises; and a set of case studies of rapid debt buildup that ended in crises. The paper reports four main results. First, episodes of debt accumulation are common, with more than 500 episodes occurring since 1970. Second, around half of these episodes were associated with financial crises which typically had worse economic outcomes than those without crises -- after 8 years output per capita was typically 6-10 percent lower and investment 15-22 percent weaker in crisis episodes. Third, a rapid buildup of debt, whether public or private, increased the likelihood of a financial crisis, as did a larger share of short-term external debt, higher debt service cover, and lower reserves cover. Fourth, countries that experienced financial crises frequently employed combinations of unsustainable fiscal, monetary and financial sector policies, and often suffered from structural and institutional weaknesses.
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    The Role of Income and Substitution in Commodity Demand
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2020-01) Baffes, John ; Kabundi, Alain ; Nagle, Peter
    This paper presents estimates of time-varying income elasticities of demand for energy and metal commodities. The analysis finds that the elasticities are close to unity, evaluated at world median per capita income levels. Furthermore, the estimates confirm that as income rises, demand growth for industrial commodities slows and eventually plateaus. Indeed, estimates for aggregate metals and energy differ by an order of magnitude throughout the income spectrum: from a low of 0.2 for advanced economies to nearly 2 for low-income countries. The analysis, which accounts for substitutability by estimating group aggregates as well as individual commodities with cross-price effects, is based on a panel autoregressive distributed lag model covering 1965-2018, for up to 63 countries.
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    Adding Fuel to the Fire: Cheap Oil during the COVID-19 Pandemic
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2020-07) Wheeler, Collette Mari ; Baffes, John ; Kabundi, Alain ; Kindberg-Hanlon, Gene ; Nagle, Peter S. ; Ohnsorge, Franziska
    The outbreak of COVID-19 and the wide-ranging measures needed to slow its advance triggered an unprecedented collapse in oil demand, a surge in oil inventories, and a record one-month decline in oil prices in March 2020. This paper examines the likely implications of the 2020 oil price plunge for emerging market and developing economies. It presents four main results. First, the record plunge in oil prices was predominantly driven by demand factors as wide-ranging measures to stem the pandemic precipitated an unprecedented collapse in oil demand, but the surge in oil inventories also exerted downward pressure on oil prices. Second, this latest oil price decline was preceded by six previous plunges over the past half-century, during which energy exporters and importers suffered similar initial output losses (about 0.5 percent) that were unwound within three years. Third, the current episode of low oil prices holds limited promise to boost the global economy amid widespread restrictions and narrow room for fiscal support in energy-exporting emerging market and developing economies. Fourth, many emerging market and developing economies entered the current public health crisis with precarious fiscal positions; current low oil prices are thus an opportunity to review energy-pricing policies, including remaining energy subsidies, to mobilize domestic resources.
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    Commodity Markets: Evolution, Challenges and Policies
    (Washington, DC: World Bank, 2022-12) Baffes, John (ed.) ; Nagle, Peter (ed.)
    Commodity markets are integral to the global economy. Understanding what drives developments of these markets is critical to the design of policy frameworks that facilitate the economic objectives of sustainable growth, inflation stability, poverty reduction, food security, and the mitigation of climate change. This study is the first comprehensive analysis examining market and policy developments for all commodity groups, including energy, metals, and agriculture, over the past century. It finds that, while the quantity of commodities consumed has risen enormously, driven by population and income growth, the relative importance of commodities has shifted over time, as technological innovation created new uses for some materials and facilitated substitution among commodities. The study also shows that commodity markets are heterogeneous in terms of their drivers, price behavior, and macroeconomic impact on emerging markets and developing economies, and that the relationship between economic growth and commodity demand varies widely across countries, depending on their stage of economic development. Policy frameworks that enable countercyclical macroeconomic responses have become increasingly common—and beneficial. Other policy tools have had mixed outcomes.
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    Global Waves of Debt: Causes and Consequences
    (Washington, DC: World Bank, 2021-03-02) Kose, M. Ayhan ; Nagle, Peter ; Ohnsorge, Franziska ; Sugawara, Naotaka
    The global economy has experienced four waves of rapid debt accumulation over the past 50 years. The first three debt waves ended with financial crises in many emerging market and developing economies. During the current wave, which started in 2010, the increase in debt in these economies has already been larger, faster, and broader-based than in the previous three waves. Current low interest rates mitigate some of the risks associated with high debt. However, emerging market and developing economies are also confronted by weak growth prospects, mounting vulnerabilities, and elevated global risks. A menu of policy options is available to reduce the likelihood that the current debt wave will end in crisis and, if crises do take place, will alleviate their impact.
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    The Role of Major Emerging Markets in Global Commodity Demand
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2018-06) Baffes, John ; Kabundi, Alain ; Nagle, Peter ; Ohnsorge, Franziska
    Rapid growth among the major emerging markets over the past 20 years has boosted global demand for commodities. The seven largest emerging markets accounted for almost all the increase in global consumption of metals, and two-thirds of the increase in energy consumption over this period. As emerging market economies mature and shift towards less commodity-intensive activities, their demand for commodities may plateau. This paper estimates income elasticities of demand for a range of energy, metal and food commodities, and finds evidence of plateauing among several commodities. Looking ahead, as economies mature and GDP growth slows, growth in demand for commodities may also slow. Based on current population and GDP growth forecasts, this paper produces scenarios of potential growth in demand for commodities over the next decade. While global energy consumption growth may remain broadly steady, growth in global demand for metals and food could slow by one-third over the next decade. This would dampen global commodity prices. Despite an expected slowdown in its growth rate, China would likely remain the single largest consumer of many commodities. For the two-thirds of emerging market and developing economies that depend on raw materials for government and export revenues, these prospects reinforce the need for economic diversification and the strengthening of policy frameworks.