Working Paper No. 474
By Dennis Reinhardt and Salvatore Dell’Erba
We examine episodes of large gross foreign direct investment (FDI) inflows - surges - at the sectoral level in emerging market economies. We find that surges in the financial sector, unlike surges in the non-financial sectors, are associated with boom-bust cycles in GDP and expansions of credit in foreign currency. In terms of the determinants of surges, we find that global and contagion factors have a stronger effect in the financial than the non-financial sectors. We also document a role for policies related to capital account openness: restrictions on other forms of capital inflows tend to increase the likelihood of surges in financial sector FDI.