Working Paper

Contagion and trade: why are currency crises regional?


Abstract: Currency crises tend to be regional; they affect countries in geographic proximity. This suggests that patterns of international trade are important in understanding how currency crises spread, above and beyond and macroeconomic phenomena. We provide empirical support for this hypothesis. Using data for five different currency crises (in 1971, 1973, 1992, 1994, and 1997) we show that currency crises affect clusters of countries tied together by international trade. By way of contrast, macroeconomic and financial influences are not closely associated with the cross-country incidence of speculative attacks. We also show that trade linkages help explain cross-country correlations in exchange market pressure during crisis episodes, even after controlling for macroeconomic factors.

Keywords: Foreign exchange rates; Financial crises; Asia; Mexico;

Access Documents

File(s): File format is application/pdf http://www.frbsf.org/econrsrch/workingp/pbc/wppb98-03.pdf

Authors

Bibliographic Information

Provider: Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco

Part of Series: Pacific Basin Working Paper Series

Publication Date: 1998

Number: 98-03