Nova SBE Working Papers

A long International Monetary Fund intervention: Portugal 1975-1979

Author: Luciano Amaral, Álvaro Ferreira da Silva, Ducan Simpson
Date: 2020
Number of pages: 69

Most of the literature on the interventions of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) in Portugal points to the June 1978 Stand-by arrangement (SBA) between the Portuguese authorities and the IMF as being the first such intervention (Nunes, 2010, Lopes, 1982 and 1996, Pinto, 1983, Schmitt, 1981, or Mateus, 2013). However, our research has unearthed facts that challenge such interpretation. The reasons are many. First, Portugal started using IMF resources since July 1975 and following policies to control the external deficit that were concordant with IMF principles and techniques since December of the same year. Second, Portugal signed an SBA in April 1977, one year before the 1978 one. And third, Portugal did not comply with the performance criteria of the 1978 SBA, which supposedly defined the first “intervention” and, consequently, did not receive any financial assistance from the IMF for its duration: June 1978 to May 1979. Zorrinho (2018) is a recent exception to the common interpretation, suggesting that, rather than a one-year intervention in 1978-1979 and a three-year one in 1983-1985, relations between Portugal and the IMF in order to restore external balance during the period 1975-1985 corresponded to a sort of decade-long IMF intervention, involving three SBAs and various other utilisations of IMF resources on the part of Portugal. We do agree with Zorrinho (2018) that the chronology of the first intervention should be enlarged but not with his proposed chronology, as we believe that the use of IMF resources was interrupted between 1978 and 1983 and that the third SBA signed with the IMF in October 1983 should be viewed in a different framework.

> Fulltext

Curriculum Vitae and Publication Record

Author: Jorge Braga de Macedo
Date: 2020
Number of pages: 42

In late January, Miguel Rocha de Rocha (a Nova SBE alumnus now running the economics department at Evora University) asked me for an updated publication list – just before faculty home pages were discontinued. After quickly selecting 292 entries from my website (266 academic titles and 26 policy documents) and pointing to popular writings and media appearances of similar magnitude, I could not resist the urge of double checking and wondered whether this could take the form of a Working Paper. Encouraged by the librarian to submit the result, I soon realized that the total came to four digits, even leaving out all most political documents and communications while I held elected office. The result is listed in two tables, the first one with the nine types he suggested (roughly books, journal articles and short writings), the second with print, radio and TV, fetched from often cryptic entries in diaries. It is prefaced by a curriculum vitae, minimally updating the one I had written and posted over ten years ago.

> Fulltext

Student segregation across and within schools. The case of the Portuguese public school system

Author: João Firmino, Luís C. Nunes, Sílvia de Almeida, Susana Batista
Date: 2020
Number of pages: 62

We provide the most comprehensive description of student segregation in the Portuguese public school system to date, a system that exhibits interesting institutional features potentially linked with the student segregation issue (e.g. school catchment areas, course tracking, and almost no central regulations regarding class composition). The analysis uses the entire regular student population enrolled in all public schools of continental Portugal (grades 1 to 12, from 2006/07 to 2016/17). Looking at three segregation dimensions – economic, academic, and immigrant – at both between and within-school levels, and using a novel dissimilarity index recently proposed in the literature aimed at better capturing systematic segregation, we find that segregation, on median, is mild, across time, grades, and regions. The most important exception is the case of within-school academic segregation. During upper-secondary schooling, in particular, when students are divided across classes according to own course-tracking decisions, it doubles. Moreover, within-school academic segregation estimates have the largest interquartile ranges, within a given year, grade, or region, pointing to heterogeneity in the way different schools set up classes internally in terms of students’ academic characteristics. Academic and economic segregation are positively associated, at both between and within school levels. The Portuguese segregation insights are also compared to those from other geographies.

> Fulltext