Development Research Group
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Financial Sector, Private Sector Development, Global Economy
Development Research Group
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Last updated July 5, 2023
Ha Minh Nguyen is an Economist in the Macroeconomics and Growth Team of the Development Research Group. He joined the Bank in July 2009 as a Young Economist after earning a Ph.D. in economics from the University of Maryland, College Park. He also holds a M.A. and B.A. in economics from The University of Adelaide, Australia. His research interests include International Finance and Economic Growth. His current research is on the financial crisis and the real exchange rates.
Publication Search Results
Now showing 1 - 10 of 16
Demand Collapse or Credit Crunch to Firms? Evidence from the World Bank's Financial Crisis Survey in Eastern Europe(World Bank, Washington, DC, 2013-10) Nguyen, Ha ; Qian, RongWhile there is a consensus that the 2008-2009 crisis was triggered by financial market disruptions in the United States, there is little agreement on whether the transmission of the crisis and the subsequent prolonged recession are due to credit factors or to a collapse of demand for goods and services. This paper assesses whether the primary effect of the global crisis on Eastern European firms took the form of an adverse demand shock or a credit crunch. Using a unique firm survey conducted by the World Bank in six Eastern European countries during the 2008-2009 financial crisis, the paper shows that the drop in demand for firms' products and services was overwhelmingly reported as the most damaging adverse effect of the crisis. Other "usual suspects," such as rising debt or reduced access to credit, are reported as minor. The paper also finds that the changes in firms' sales and installed capacity are significantly and robustly correlated with the demand sensitivity of the sector in which the firms operate. However, they are not robustly correlated with various proxies for firms' credit needs.
Publication(World Bank, Washington, DC, 2012-07) Del Carpio, Ximena ; Nguyen, Ha ; Wang, Liang ChoonUsing survey data from the Indonesian manufacturing industry, this paper investigates the impact of minimum wage on employment and wages offered by Indonesian manufacturing firms from 1993 to 2006. It shows that the estimated effects of minimum wage on employment are positive within a province (i.e., with province fixed effects), but negative within a firm (i.e., with firm fixed effects), indicating the importance of using firm panel data to reduce the endogeneity bias in estimates. It finds significant heterogeneous effects of minimum-wage changes on employment. The employment effects of minimum wages are significant and negative among small firms and less educated workers, but not among large firms and workers with high school education and above. The negative employment impact is more severe for non-production workers than for production workers. The analysis also shows that the minimum wage disproportionally affects women: most of the non-production job losses are experienced by female workers. Lastly, the paper finds that the minimum wage is more correlated with the average wage of small firms than that of large firms, suggesting that minimum wages are more binding in small firms.
Publication(World Bank, Washington, DC, 2014-06) Nguyen, Ha ; Jaramillo, Patricio A.This paper poses a question: do firms in developing countries not innovate because they are unwilling to? The question moves away from the conventional focus on the obstacles (such as the lack of access to finance) that hinder firms' innovation ability. The World Bank's Enterprise Survey is used first to estimate the return to firms' innovation across many developing countries, in terms of sales and sales per worker. Then the return to innovation is compared across countries with different levels of institutional quality. In countries with lower institutional quality (specifically, rule of law, regulatory quality, property and patent right protection), the return to firms' innovation is lower. This suggests that poor institutional environment lowers firms' return to innovation and hence discourages them from investing in researching and adopting new products.
Publication(World Bank Group, Washington, DC, 2014-07) Eden, Maya ; Nguyen, HaIn countries with limited access to finance, firms accumulate retained earnings to finance indivisible investment projects. McKinnon (1973) illustrates that when cash is used as a primary store of value, inflation may discourage investment as it increases the cost of accumulating retained earnings. This paper formalizes this argument in a dynamic framework and provides a simple calibration of the model that suggests sizable effects of inflation on investment. The mechanism is particularly relevant for small firms, as firms with lower cash flows must accumulate retained earnings for longer periods of time to meet the price of indivisible investment goods. Consistent with the model, empirical evidence suggests that inflation disproportionately reduces investment in small firms.
Publication(World Bank, Washington, DC, 2012-03) Nguyen, Ha ; Qian, RongUsing the World Bank Enterprise Survey covering 6,800 firms across 43 developing countries, this paper investigates the prevalence and determinants of collateralized borrowing. It focuses on the following two aspects: (1) whether firms' loans from financial institutions require collateral (the extensive margin) and (2) the collateral value relative to the loan value (the intensive margin). On the first aspect, it finds that collateral borrowing is prevalent. On average, 73 percent of loans from financial institutions require collateral. Firms that are small or sell domestically are significantly less likely to pledge collateral. Shorter loans and loans from non-bank financial institutions are also less often associated with collateral. On the second aspect, it finds that on average the loan value is at least 72 percent of the collateral value. The only robust and significant determinants of the collateral value are the type of assets used for collateral. The analysis also checks whether countries' income and institutions affect collateralized borrowing. It finds that firms in countries with higher income and better institutions and credit information are significantly less likely to pledge collateral. These factors, however, have little impact on collateral values.
Publication(World Bank, Washington, DC, 2010-01) Nguyen, HaIn the past two decades, cross-border portfolio holdings of a large variety of assets have risen sharply. This has created an important role for changes in asset prices of a country's external assets and liabilities (i.e. "valuation effects") in affecting the country's net foreign asset position. Valuation effects are commonly thought as stabilizing: they counteract current account movements and mitigate the impact of the current account on the country's net foreign asset position. This paper shows that whether valuation effects are stabilizing or not depends critically on the nature of underlying productivity shocks. In response to transitory shocks, valuation effects are stabilizing; but in response to trend shocks, such effects amplify the impact of the current account on the net foreign asset position. These contrasting results arise because optimally smoothing consumers respond differently to a transitory shock than to a trend shock to income. The results are consistent with the pattern of external imbalances between the United States and other G.7 countries since the 1990s.
Publication(World Bank, Washington, DC, 2015-06) Calderon, Cesar ; Nguyen, HaThis paper examines whether domestic output growth helps attract capital inflows and, in turn, capital inflows help boost output growth in a set of 38 Sub-Saharan African countries. Using a two-step approach to address reverse causality and omitted variable issues, the paper finds that output growth in countries in Sub-Saharan Africa does not attract capital inflows. However, aid and foreign direct investment inflows enhance growth, while sovereign debt inflows do not. A 1 percent increase in the level of real aid inflows raises growth of real output per capita by 0.022 percentage point. For foreign direct investment inflows, the figure is 0.002 percentage point.
Publication(Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the World Bank, 2013-08-01) Servén, Luis ; Nguyen, HaThis paper surveys the academic and policy debate on the origins of global imbalances, their prospects after the global crisis, and their policy implications. A conventional view of global imbalances considers them to primarily result from macroeconomic policies and cyclical forces that cause demand for goods to outstrip supply in the United States and other rich countries and that have the opposite effect in major emerging markets. An alternative view holds that global imbalances are the result of structural distortions and slow-changing factors that primarily affect assets markets. This paper reviews the analytical underpinnings of these two perspectives and the empirical evidence of their respective merits. The paper then assesses the outlook for global imbalances after the crisis, particularly in terms of policy action to reduce their magnitude. Policy intervention is warranted to the extent that the imbalances are driven by welfare-reducing distortions, but in this case, the primary target of policy intervention should be the distortions rather than the imbalances. Finally, the paper examines various forms of international spillovers that may call for multilateral action to limit global imbalances.
Publication(World Bank, Washington, DC, 2016-06) Ersal-Kiziler, Eylem ; Nguyen, HaThe pattern of debt flows to peripheral European Monetary Union members seems puzzling: they are mostly indirect and channeled through the large countries of the European Monetary Union. This paper examines to what extent the introduction of the euro and the elimination of the intra-area currency risk can explain this puzzle. A three-country dynamic stochastic general equilibrium framework with endogenous portfolio choice and two currencies is developed. In the equilibrium, the core members of the European Monetary Union emerge as the main group of lenders to the peripheral European Monetary Union members. Outside lenders are pushed from the periphery debt markets because of currency risk. The model generates a pattern of debt flows consistent with the data despite the absence of any exogenous frictions or market segmentations.
Publication(World Bank, Washington, DC, 2012-04) Eden, Maya ; Nguyen, HaThis paper studies the issue of real exchange rate misalignment and the difficulties in settling international real exchange rate disputes. The authors show theoretically that determining when a country should be sanctioned for real exchange rate "manipulations" is difficult: in some situations a country's real exchange rate targeting can be beneficial to other countries, while in others it is not. Regardless, it is difficult to establish whether a misaligned real exchange rate is intentionally manipulated rather than unintentionally caused by other policies or by various distortions in the economy. The paper continues by illustrating the difficulty in measuring real exchange rate misalignment, and provides a critical assessment of existing methodologies. It concludes by proposing a new method for measuring real exchange rate misalignment based on differences in marginal products between producers of tradable and non-tradable goods.