What expenditure does Anglosphere foreign borrowing fund?

Anthony J. Makin, Paresh Kumar Narayan, Seema Narayan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

20 Citations (Scopus)


This paper examines the extent to which foreign borrowing funds private investment, consumption and government expenditure in the United States, the United Kingdom, Australia, and New Zealand (the Anglosphere), advanced economies which have been the world's largest international borrowers since 1990. Using a bivariate predictive regression model, we estimate the relative importance of these expenditure aggregates as predictors of their external deficits, and hence foreign borrowing. Overall, based on quarterly macroeconomic data for the period 1990-2011, the evidence suggests that foreign borrowing has not financed higher household consumption in these economies over recent decades, with the possible exception of the United States. While results concerning government spending are mixed due to policy reaction, business cycle and public-private saving offset effects, strong results for private investment augur well for the sustainability of this grouping's foreign borrowing.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)63-78
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of International Money and Finance
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • Anglosphere economies
  • Current account deficits
  • Expenditure
  • F32
  • F41
  • F47
  • Foreign borrowing

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