ASST-531-01 Sovereign Risk & Asia
Fall for 2017-2018
Byrne, Thomas
Sovereign risk is the risk that a national government will default on its debt obligations. For most of the post-World War II era, sovereign risk was mainly a concern facing investors in emerging market governments. However, in the wake of the global financial crisis in 2008, in some advanced countries government debt has grown to levels only previously seen in wartime. Some governments formerly judged to be of the lowest or low risk have experienced significant deterioration in their credit quality, and Greece experienced back-to-back defaults in 2012. This course will provide a multifaceted view of sovereign risk, but centered on the assessments of credit rating agencies. It will focus on the interplay of economic, institutional, fiscal, financial, market and geopolitical factors that influence sovereign credit quality. The course will also examine the interplay between sovereign and country risk. It will closely examine pivotal periods when sovereign risk spiked—namely, the 1997 Asian financial crisis and the 2008 global financial crisis. Students will critique credit rating agency methodologies and ratings, and they will participate mock credit rating committees. At the conclusion of the course, students will: (1) be conversant on the interplay of factors influencing sovereign credit risk (2) be capable of taking a substantiated, forward-looking opinion of the credit quality of emerging and advanced country governments. The instructor will draw on his experience gained over three decades, mostly as a sovereign risk analyst and manager for Moody’s Investors Service in New York City and Singapore and also as an emerging market economist at the Institute of International Finance in Washington, DC; he is currently the president of The Korea Society in New York City.
Credits: 3
Prerequisites: None

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ASST-531-02 Sovereign Risk & Asia
Fall for 2017-2018
Byrne, Thomas
Sovereign risk is the risk that a national government will default on its debt obligations. For most of the post-World War II era, sovereign risk was mainly a concern facing investors in emerging market governments. However, in the wake of the global financial crisis in 2008, in some advanced countries government debt has grown to levels only previously seen in wartime. Some governments formerly judged to be of the lowest or low risk have experienced significant deterioration in their credit quality, and Greece experienced back-to-back defaults in 2012. This course will provide a multifaceted view of sovereign risk, but centered on the assessments of credit rating agencies. It will focus on the interplay of economic, institutional, fiscal, financial, market and geopolitical factors that influence sovereign credit quality. The course will also examine the interplay between sovereign and country risk. It will closely examine pivotal periods when sovereign risk spiked—namely, the 1997 Asian financial crisis and the 2008 global financial crisis. Students will critique credit rating agency methodologies and ratings, and they will participate mock credit rating committees. At the conclusion of the course, students will: (1) be conversant on the interplay of factors influencing sovereign credit risk (2) be capable of taking a substantiated, forward-looking opinion of the credit quality of emerging and advanced country governments. The instructor will draw on his experience gained over three decades, mostly as a sovereign risk analyst and manager for Moody’s Investors Service in New York City and Singapore and also as an emerging market economist at the Institute of International Finance in Washington, DC; he is currently the president of The Korea Society in New York City.
Credits: 3
Prerequisites: None
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