This database was initially constructed for the paper:
Kaminsky, Graciela, “Varieties of Currency Crises” NBER Working Paper No. 10193,
December 2003 and published as “Currency Crises: Are They All the Same?” Journal of
International Money and Finance, Vol. 25, 2006, 503-527.
In 2005, the database was updated. This database contains data for Ecuador and Paraguay,
which were not in the original database.
Please cite this paper if you use this database. Thank you very much.
Questions about the database: Contact Graciela Kaminsky at firstname.lastname@example.org
This file contains a chronology of Banking and Currency Crises as well as a chronology of Financial
Liberalization of the twenty-two countries in the sample.
Financial Liberalization data is based on information from Central Banks. Financial liberalization occurs
when controls on domestic interest rates are eliminated.
Banking Crises are dated based on information from various financial newspapers and articles in
economic journals. We mark the beginning of a banking crisis by an “event.” The two types of events
considered are: (1) Bank runs that lead to the closure, merging, or takeover by the public sector of one or
more financial institutions (Argentina 1980, 1985, and 1994, Philippines 1981, Thailand 1983, Turkey 1991,
Uruguay 1981, and Venezuela 1993); and (2) If there are no runs, the closure, merging, takeover, or large-
scale government assistance of an important financial institution (or group of institutions), that marks the
start of a string of similar outcomes for other financial institutions (Brazil 1985 and 1994, Chile 1982,
Colombia 1992, Denmark 1987, Finland 1991, Indonesia 1992, Israel 1983, Mexico 1992, Norway 1988, Peru
1983, Spain 1978, Sweden 1991, Thailand 1979, and Uruguay 1971. To date these events, we rely heavily
on existing studies of banking crises and on the financial press around the time of
BANKING CRISES CURRENCY CRISES
Country Begin Date Events Begin Date Events
Argentina March, 1980 The failure of a large private bank (Banco de Intercambio June, 1970* All exchange transactions suspended.
Regional) led to runs on three other banks that had to be
June, 1975 Commercial rate depreciated by 60% exchange transactions
intervened soon after1. Between 1980-1982 more than 70
were suspended April, 1981. On April 2, the tablita
institutions were liquidated to subject to central bank
stabilization plan was abandoned. The exchange rate was
interventions. Estimated loss/cost was 55.3% of GDP2. devalued by 30%.
May, 1985 In early May the government closed a large bank, leading to February, 1981* On April 2, the tablita stabilization plan was abandoned. The
large runs which led the government to freeze the dollar exchange rate was devalued by 30%.
deposits on May, 19.
January, 1989 Non-performing assets constituted 27% of the aggregate July, 1982 Dual market introduced; multiple devaluations amounting to
portfolio and 37% of the portfolios of state owned banks. 136%.
Failed banks held 40% of the financial system assets2.
December, 1994 The Mexican devaluations led to a run on banks which September, 1987* The currency was devalued by 16%. There was a reserve loss
resulted in an 18% decline in deposits between December and of 8%.
March1. Through end of 1997, 63 out of 205 banking
institutions were either closed or merged. Direct and indirect
cost to the public was estimated at 1.6% of GDP.
February, 2001 Rising perception of currency risk generated a massive April, 1989 The dual exchange rate was unified.
withdrawal of deposits from banks. By November 47 of 50
banks had suffered withdrawals3. February, 1990* The currency was devalued by 220%
January, 2002* The currency was devalued by 40%
Bolivia October, 1987 The central bank liquidated two of twelve private commercial November, 1982 Unification of dual exchange rate; the exchange rate was
banks; seven more reported large losses1. Total non- devalued by 354%
performing loans of the banking system reached 29.8% in
1987; in mid-1988 reported arrears stood at 92% of
commercial banks net worth2.
November, 1994 Two banks with 11% of the banking system assets were November, 1983 Exchange rate was devalued by 155%.
June, 2002 A four year economic slump had caused around $1.5 billion, a September,1985 Exchange rate auctions introduced; the currency depreciated by
third of all deposits, leave the banking system. Political 94%.
uncertainty in the run up to the elections on June 30th
intensified the problem12.
Brazil November, 1985 Three large banks, Comind, Maison Nave, and Auxiliar, were February, 1983 Exchange rate was devalued by 23%.
taken over by the government. By end 1997, the central bank February, 1987* The cruzado plan was abandoned and the exchange rate was
has intervened in or put under Temporary Special floated.
Administration Regime (RAET) system 43 financial
July, 1994 17 small banks were liquidated, 3 private banks intervened, July, 1989 Exchange rate was devalued by 11%.
and 5 state banks place under special administration.
July, 1994 17 small banks were liquidated, 3 private banks intervened,
and 5 state banks place under special administration. November, 1990 Exchange rate was devalued by 35%.
October, 1991 Exchange rate was devalued by 38%.
January, 1999 Exchange rate was devalued by 39%.
Chile September. 1981 Three banks, which were intervened two months later, began to December, 1971 Exchange transactions were suspended on December 6.
lose deposits1. Authorities intervened in 4 banks and 4 August, 1972 Exchange rate was devalued by 58%.
financial institutions (with 33% of outstanding loans). !982- October, 1973* On September 30 the exchange rate was devalued by 1306%.
1985 Government spent 41.2% of GDP2. December, 1974 Exchange rate was devalued by 28%.
January, 1976 Exchange rate was devalued by 21%.
June, 1982* On June 17, the tablita stabilization plan was abandoned. A
devaluation of 0.8% per month was announced. Two months
later the exchange rate was allowed to float.
September, 1984* Exchange rate was devalued by 19%.
Colombia July, 1982 Banco Nacional becomes the first of 6 major bank and 8 March, 1983 State of economic emergency declared for 45 days. The rate of
finance companies to be intervened1. Costs of restructuring crawl was accelerated by 5% in March and again in April. The
was estimated to be 5% of GDP2 black market premia hit a historic high.
March, 1998 A medium sized bank, Banco Unocal, was taken over by February, 1985 The reserves fell by 22%.
Fogafin and merged with Banco de Estado. The merged bank August, 1995 The exchange rate was devalued by 7%
was since liquidated. Subsequently in 1999, two large private September, 1997 The exchange rate was devalued by 7%
banks were taken over by Fogafin; smaller banks that failed September, 1998 The exchange rate was devalued by 8%
were closed. A number of public banks were closed 4.
August, 1999 The exchange rate was devalued by 8%
July, 2002 The exchange rate was devalued by 9%
Denmark March, 1987 The collapse of two small banks shook the banking and led to May, 1971 A speculative attack results in reserve losses of 23% in April
moves to curb bank lending1. Cumulative loan losses from and 12% in May.
1990-1992 were 9% of loans; 40 of the 60 problem banks were June, 1973 The currency was devalued by 6%.
merged2. November, 1979 EMS parities increased; implied devaluation of 4.8%.
August, 1993* On August 2 the intervention bands were widened from 2.25%
Ecuador March, 1996 Authorities intervened in the 5th largest commercial bank. May, 1982 The exchange rate was devalued by 33%
Seven financial institutions, accounting for 25%-30% of
commercial banking assets, were closed in 1998/99 2. March, 1983 The exchange rate was devalued by 27%
December, 1985 The exchange rate was devalued by 43%
March, 1999 A protracted banking crisis evolved into a bank run. The August, 1986 The exchange rate was devalued by 37%
government declared a bank holiday, deposits were frozen and August, 1988 The exchange rate was devalued by 56%
exchange rate was floated5. In September 1999, the
government defaulted on its Discount Brady Bonds.
March, 1999 A protracted banking crisis evolved into a bank run. The
government declared a bank holiday, deposits were frozen and
exchange rate was floated5. In September 1999, the February, 2000 The reserves fell by 63%.
government defaulted on its Discount Brady Bonds.
Finland September, 1991 A large bank (Skopbank) collapses on September 19 and is June, 1973* The currency was devalued by 7%.
intervened1. Government takes control of 3 banks accounting October, 1982 On October 6, the exchange rate was depreciated by 4.2%; a
for 31% of total savings bank system deposits. week later it was depreciated by 5.7%.
Recapitalization costs amounted to 11% of GDP2. November, 1991 On November 15 the currency was devalued by 12.3%,
following a temporary float the previous day.
September, 1992 On September 8 the peg to ECU was discontinued and the
currency was allowed to float.
Indonesia November, 1992 A large bank (Bank Summa) collapses and triggers runs on November, 1978 On November 15 the currency was devalued by 34%.
three smaller banks.
November, 1997 In early November, the Indonesian government closed 16 April, 1983 On March 30 the currency was devalued by 28%.
troubled private banks6. As of March 1999, Bank of Indonesia September, 1986 On September 12 the currency was devalued by 31%.
closed down 61 banks and nationalized 54 banks, out of a total December, 1997 The exchange rate was devalued by 27%.
of 240. NPLs were estimated to range from 65-75% of total
June, 1998 The exchange rate was devalued by 42%.
loans. Fiscal costs were estimated to be 50-55% of GDP2.
Israel October, 1983 The public's fears of a big devaluation of the shekel led to November, 1974 The currency was devalued by 43%.
heavy selling to raise funds for buying dollars. This resulted in
a crisis which wiped 50 per cent off the value of the shares on
the Tel Aviv stock exchange7.
November, 1977 The currency was allowed to float; depreciates by 50%.
October, 1983 The currency was devalued by 20%.
August, 1984 Foreign exchange transactions suspended for a day to permit
changes in exchange controls.
Malaysia July, 1985 Runs against some branches of a large domestic bank, July, 1975 The currency was devalued by 8%.
following the collapse of a related bank in Hong Kong1.
Reported losses between 1985-88 were equivalent to 4.7% of
August, 1997 Two finance companies were taken over by the central bank, August, 1997 The currency was devalued by 12%.
including MBF Finance, the largest independent finance
companies. At the end of 1998, NPLs were estimated to be 25-
35% of total banking system assets2.
June, 1998 The currency was devalued by 7%.
Mexico September, 1982 Government takes over the banks. September, 1976 On September 1, the peso was allowed to float; in November
banks and credit institutions forbidden to transact in foreign
October, 1992 Several financial institutions that held Ajustabonos were hurt February, 1982 On February 18 the currency was devalued by 75%.
by the rise in real interest rates in the second half of 1992.
December, 1982 Foreign exchange market closed. Foreign currency deposits
converted and controls imposed.
December, 1994 On December 19, the currency was devalued by 15%; two days
later the currency was allowed to float.
Norway November, 1988 Two regional saving banks fail. The banks are eventually June, 1973* The currency was devalued by 13%.
merged and the bailout begins.
February, 1978 On February 13, the currency was devalued by 8%.
May, 1986 On May 12, the currency was devalued by 10.7%.
December, 1992* On December 10, the peg to the Ecu was discontinued and the
currency was allowed to float.
January, 1998 The reserves fell by 25%.
July, 1999 The reserves fell by 17%.
November, 2000 The reserves fell by 17%.
Paraguay May, 1995 Banco General and Bancopar -- the 3rd. and 4th. Largest banks June, 1984 The currency was devalued by 50%
in terms of deposits -- failed to meet their clearing obligations.
Despite central bank intervention, this triggered a massive
withdrawal from private domestic banks8.
March, 1985 The currency was devalued by 33%
December, 1986 The currency was devalued by 72%
March, 1989 The currency was devalued by 82%
Peru March, 1983 Two large banks fail. The rest of the system suffered from high June, 1976 The currency was devalued by 44%. Suspension of
levels of NPLs and financial disintermediation following the convertibility.
nationalization of the banking system in 1987 2.
October, 1987 The currency was devalued by 25%.
September, 1988* The currency was devalued by 658%.
Philippines January, 1981 Commercial paper market collapses, triggering bank runs and February, 1970 Currency allowed to float and depreciated by 47%.
the failure on non-bank financial institutions and thrift banks.
July, 1997 In 1998 one commercial bank, 7 of 88 thrifts, 40 of 750 rural October, 1983 Banks were required to sell their foreign exchange to the
banks were placed under receivership. Net loss estimated by central bank. The authorities announced moratorium on
the end of 1999 was 6.7% of GDP2. external debt.
June , 1984 Banks were required to sell their foreign exchange to the
central bank. The currency was depreciated by 29%.
February, 1986 The currency was devalued by 15%.
December, 1997 The currency was devalued by 15%.
Spain November, 1978 Bank of Spain begins to rescue a number of smaller banks. February, 1976 On February 9 the currency was devalued by 13%.
July, 1977 Currency was allowed to float to a 20% depreciation.
December, 1982 On December 4, the currency was devalued by 8%.
September, 1992 Central rate of currency in the ERM devalued by 4.8% on
May, 1993 Central rate of currency in the ERM devalued by 8% on May
Sweden November, 1991 The Swedish government rescues Nordbanken, the nation's August, 1977 Discontinued European common margin agreements; currency
second largest bank1. Overall, 5 of 6 largest banks, accounting depreciated by 10%.
for over 70% of the banking system assets, experienced September, 1981 On September 14, the currency was devalued by 10% vs. a
difficulties. Cost of recapitalization amounted to 4% of GDP2. basket.
October, 1982 On October 2, the currency was devalued by 15.9%.
September, 1992 The reserves fell by 24%. On November 19, the peg to the ECU
was discontinued and the currency was allowed to float.
Thailand March, 1979 Following the stock market crash, one of the largest finance November, 1978* The currency was allowed to float on November 1.
October, 1983 Large losses in a finance company lead to runs and government July, 1981 Currency was devalued by 9%.
May, 1996 The finance ministry took control of the Bangkok Bank of November, 1984 Currency was devalued by 15%.
Commerce. Customers were estimated to have withdrawn 9 to July, 1997 The Baht was floated. The currency devalued by 24%.
10 billion baht (US $ 556 million) in a week 9. June, 1998 Currency was devalued by 5%. The central bank lost 7% of its
September, 1999 Currency was devalued by 7%.
July, 2000 Currency was devalued by 6%.
Turkey January, 1991 The start of the Gulf War led to massive withdrawals and a run August, 1970 On August 10, the currency was devalued by 67%.
on banks, prompting the government to guaranty all deposits.
April, 1994 Three banks failed in April 1994. By June 1994 authorities January, 1980 The currency was devalued by 100%.
had spent 1.1% of GDP.
December, 2000 Demirbank, which is at the centre of the Turkish banking April, 1994 The central bank devalued the currency by 54%.
crisis, was taken over by the state after a criminal investigation
into 10 banks already under state administration led to an
increase in interest rates10.
February, 2001* The currency was devalued by 36%.
Uruguay May, 1971 BancoMercantile fails. A wave of bank mergers and December, 1971 On November 30, exchange transactions were suspended;
bankruptcies develop, driven by high real interest rates. multiple exchange rates were introduced. On March 2, the
exchange rate was devalued by 202%. Exchange rate was
allowed to float. It devalued by 40%.
March, 1981 A large scale run on banks came on the wake of the Argentine December, 1982 The tablita plan was abandoned and exchange rate was allowed
devaluation which marked the end of the Argentine Tablita. to float.
Insolvent banks accounted for 20% of the financial system July, 2002 The currency was devalued by 35%.
deposits. Costs of recapitalizing banks was estimated to be 7%
July, 2002 The government imposed a partial freeze on bank withdrawals.
The massive outflow of deposits in Uruguay began after
Argentina froze its bank accounts. Four banks were suspended,
including Banco Commercial, the largest private sector bank
before the crisis with $2.3 billion in assets11.
Venezuela October, 1993 Bank runs on the country's second largest bank (Banco Latino); February, 1983* Foreign exchange transactions were suspended, later followed
on January 1994 the bank closed 1. In 1994 authorities by the suspension of convertibility.
intervened in 13 of 47 banks which held 50% of the deposits, February, 1984 Effective depreciation of 74%.
and in 5 additional banks in 1995 2. December, 1986 Effective depreciation of 93%.
March, 1989 System of multiple exchange rates replaced by a float, leading
to a 154% depreciation.
May, 1994 Following massive capital flight, exchange controls were
December, 1995 The currency was devalued by 71%.
February, 2002 The currency was devalued by 39%.
Source: 1. Kaminsky and Reinhart (1996)
2. Gerald Caprio and Daniela Klingebiel, "Episodes of Systematic and Borderline
Financial Crises" May 1999. World Bank Working Paper #2325.
3. Augusto De La Torre, World Bank, Eduardo Levy Yayati, Universidad Torcuato Di
Tella, Sergio Schmukler, World Bank, " Living and Dying with Hard Pegs: Rise and
Fall of Argentina's Currency Board," November 2002.
4. 'Colombia: Selected Issues and Statistical Appendix,' IMF
Country Report No. 01/68, April 30, 2001
5. Policy Development and Review Department, IMF, "Crisis Resolution in the Context
of Sovereign Debt Restructuring: A Summary of Considerations". January 28, 2003
6. The Banker, December 1, 1997, Vol. 147, No. 862
7. Financial Times (London), January 18, 1985
8. Garcia-Herrero, Alicia, "Banking Crises in Latin America
in the 1990's: Lessons from Argentina, Paraguay, and
Venezuela" October 1997. IMF Working Paper WP/97/140.
9. Business Times (Singapore), May 21, 1996
10. Financial Times (London), December 28, 2000
11. Latin Finance, October, 2002, URUGUAY; Pg. 25, 1664 words, Holding On, But
Barely, by Jennifer Galloway
12. BBC News , World Edition; August 8, 2002.
The government imposed a partial freeze on bank withdrawals. The massive outflow of deposits in
Business News Americas, August 26, 2002, 471 words, FITCH: FOREIGN BANKS COULD BENEFIT FROM CRISIS - URUGUAY
deposit outflows since the lifting of the bank holiday on August 5
Uruguay's earlier 1980s crisis
The banking crisis has led to the suspension of all three Uruguayan-owned private banks and the one foreign-owned bank with substantial do
LatinFinance, October, 2002, URUGUAY; Pg. 25, 1664 words, Holding On, But Barely, by Jennifer Galloway
the Uruguayan government imposed a partial freeze on bank withdrawals in July to prevent a widespread banking crisis
The massive outflow of deposits in Uruguay began after Argentina froze bank accounts. With limited access to money in their own country, Arg
Among the four suspended banks is Banco Comercial, which before the crisis was the country's largest private sector bank with $ 2.3 billion in
The Banker, July 1, 2002, Americas
In February, Uruguay's central bank suspended the operations of Argentina's Banco de Galicia in the country after nervous savers pulled out a
The Banker, July 1, 2002, Americas
By late November, the steady trickle of deposits out of Argentina's financial system turned into a flood, and the government was soon forced to
The Banker, January 1, 2003, Americas
Eduardo Duhalde, the caretaker president,came into office on January 2, 2002 and promptly ended the peso's 11-year paritywith the dollar. In F
LatinFinance, August, 2002August
Summary of state of banking system in all LACs.
Financial Times (London) (London), December 28, 2000
Demirbank, which is at the centre of the Turkish banking crisis that began earlier this month, was taken over by the state after suffering financ
The situation erupted after a criminal investigation into 10 banks already under state administration led to an increase in interest rates. As rates
Financial Times (London) (London), September 12, 2000
corruption and mismanagement which aggravated the collapse of six banks are the by-products of the enclave's international isolation.
LatinFinance, November, 2001 Demirbank, which is at the centre of the Turkish banking crisis, was taken over by the state after a
The Ecuadorian banking system collapsed in 1999, and the banks left standing are still reeling from the aftershocks. In July, the Ecuadorian go
CRISIS - URUGUAY
e one foreign-owned bank with substantial domestic business
spread banking crisis
ed access to money in their own country, Argentines quickly began yanking savings they had stashed away in Montevideo
argest private sector bank with $ 2.3 billion in assets
the country after nervous savers pulled out a third of deposits. Uruguay's central bank took control over the bank for 90 days while the banking group came up with a plan to r
ood, and the government was soon forced to impose a "temporary" banking freeze. But there was no return: three weeks later, the government was run out of office by nation
d the peso's 11-year paritywith the dollar. In February, he introduced asymmetrical pesification and $ 40bn in deposit accounts were transformed into pesos at the rate of 1.4
s taken over by the state after suffering financial troubles. It is one of 11 Turkish banks now under state ownership.
n led to an increase in interest rates. As rates began to rise, Demirbank found it could no longer finance its large holdings of traditionally lucrative treasury bills with short-term
f the enclave's international isolation.
ng crisis, was taken over by the state after after a criminal investigation into 10 banks already under state administration led to an increase in interest rates.
m the aftershocks. In July, the Ecuadorian government shut down the country's largest state-owned bank, Filanbanco, because of severe liquidity problems. Filanbanco repor
le the banking group came up with a plan to recapitalise its Uruguayan operations. Earlier, another bank in Uruguay, Banco Comercial, was severely shaken by fraud allegatio
he government was run out of office by nationwide rioting. The country defaulted on$ 155bn in national and provincial government debt and devalued the currency, which had
were transformed into pesos at the rate of 1.4 pesos to the dollar (despite the dollar fetching more than 3.5 pesos in the currency markets), while dollar-denominated debts we
itionally lucrative treasury bills with short-term money. The bank's scramble for funds from reluctant lenders helped provoke a wider liquidity crisis, and led to a snowballing pa
an increase in interest rates.
of severe liquidity problems. Filanbanco reported more than $ 100 million in losses for 2000 despite a $ 300 million capital infusion from the central bank. Thousands of depos
ercial, was severely shaken by fraud allegations against one of its main shareholders, Argentine banker Carlos Rohm.
nt debt and devalued the currency, which had been pegged at par to the dollar under a currency board for a decade
markets), while dollar-denominated debts were turned into pesos at the rate of one peso to one dollar
der liquidity crisis, and led to a snowballing panic, in which foreign investors sold Turkish assets and cut lending in the country
n from the central bank. Thousands of depositors were left with devalued accounts and frozen assets until Banco Bolivariano agreed to help out
reed to help out
Financial Times (London), January 18, 1985, Friday, SECTION I; Overseas News; Pg. 3, 966 words, Israeli banks face close scrutiny
over shares collapse, David Lennon
The trouble goes back to October 1983 when the public's fears of a big devaluation of the shekel led to heavy selling to raise funds for
buying dollars.This resulted in a collapse which wiped 50 per cent off the value of the shares on the Tel Aviv stock exchange.
Asia & Pacific Review World of Information, November 1998, Comment & Analysis; Country Profile; Statistics; Forecast; Pg. 1,
2804 words, MALAYSIA: Review 1998
by early March 1998 Malaysia's currency was trading at around MD3.94 per USD. This trend began slowly but turned into a rout in August
1997, when Dr Mahathir closed and then reopened the KLSE to foreign investors, and raised the possibility of full exchange controls.
The Banker, December 1, 1997, Vol. 147, No. 862
In early November, the Indonesian government closed 16 troubled private banks, provoking howls of protest from powerful friends and
relatives of President Suharto. Three of the 16 were owned by relatives of the President, highlighting the extensive cronyism in Indonesia.