nep-lam New Economics Papers
on Central and South America
Issue of 2017‒12‒03
three papers chosen by
Maximo Rossi
Universidad de la República

  1. The Adjustment to Commodity Price Shocks in Chile, Colombia, and Peru By Francisco Roch
  2. Can Audits Backfire? Evidence from Public Procurement in Chile By Maria Paula Gerardino; Stephan Litschig; Dina Pomeranz
  3. Urbanization Patterns, Social Interactions and Female Voting in Rural Paraguay By Alberto Chong; Gianmarco León; Vivian Roza; Martín Valdivia; Gabriela Vega

  1. By: Francisco Roch
    Abstract: This paper presents a comparative analysis of the macroeconomic adjustment in Chile, Colombia, and Peru to commodity terms-of-trade shocks. The study is done in two steps: (i) an analysis of the impulse responses of key macroeconomic variables to terms-of-trade shocks and (ii) an event study of the adjustment to the recent decline in commodity prices. The experiences of these countries highlight the importance of flexible exchange rates to help with the adjustment to lower commodity prices, and staying vigilant in addressing depreciation pressures on inflation through tightening monetary policies. On the fiscal front, evidence shows that greater fiscal space, like in Chile and Peru, gives more room for accommodating terms-of-trade shocks.
    Keywords: Western Hemisphere;Peru;Chile;Colombia;JEL Classification Numbers: E62, F14, H50, O13 Commodity Prices, Fiscal Policy, Flexible Exchange Rates, Commodity Prices, Country and Industry Studies of Trade, General
    Date: 2017–09–29
  2. By: Maria Paula Gerardino; Stephan Litschig; Dina Pomeranz
    Abstract: Audits are generally intended to monitor compliance with existing rules. However, audits can also create unintended impacts and incentives through the specific protocol by which they are executed. In particular, audits can discourage the use of complex administrative procedures with more rules for auditors to check. This paper investigates the effects of procurement audits on public entities' choice of purchase procedures in Chile. While the national procurement legislation tries to promote the use of more transparent and competitive auctions rather than discretionary direct contracts for selection of suppliers, auctions are significantly more complex and the audit protocol mechanically leads to more scrutiny and a higher probability of further investigation for auctions than for direct contracts. Using a regression discontinuity design based on a scoring rule of the National Comptroller Agency, we find that audits lead to a decrease in the use of auctions and a corresponding increase in the use of direct contracts. In order to further test the underlying mechanism, we develop a new approach to conduct subgroup analysis in regression discontinuity designs while holding other observables constant.
    JEL: D73 H57 O38
    Date: 2017–10
  3. By: Alberto Chong; Gianmarco León; Vivian Roza; Martín Valdivia; Gabriela Vega
    Abstract: We use a field experiment to evaluate the impact of two informational get-out-the-vote (GOTV) campaigns to boost female electoral participation in Paraguay. We find that public rallies have no effect either on registration or on voter turnout in the 2013 presidential elections. However, households that received door-to-door (D2D) treatment are 4.6 percentage points more likely to vote. Experimental variation on the intensity of the treatment at the locality level allows us to estimate spillover effects, which are present in localities that are geographically more concentrated, and thus may favor social interactions. Reinforcement effects to the already treated population are twice as large as diffusion to the untreated. Our results underscore the importance of taking into account urbanization patterns when designing informational campaigns.
    Keywords: voter behavior, electoral politics, urbanization, spillover effects, Paraguay
    JEL: O10 D72 O53 D71
    Date: 2017–11

This nep-lam issue is ©2017 by Maximo Rossi. It is provided as is without any express or implied warranty. It may be freely redistributed in whole or in part for any purpose. If distributed in part, please include this notice.
General information on the NEP project can be found at For comments please write to the director of NEP, Marco Novarese at <>. Put “NEP” in the subject, otherwise your mail may be rejected.
NEP’s infrastructure is sponsored by the School of Economics and Finance of Massey University in New Zealand.