Self-validating optimum currency areas
A currency area can be a self-validating optimal policy regime, even when monetary unification does not foster real economic integration and intra-industry trade. In our model, firms choose the optimal degree of exchange rate pass-through to export prices while accounting for expected monetary policies, and monetary authorities choose optimal policy rules while taking firms' pass-through as given. We show that there exist two equilibria, each of which defines a self-validating currency regime. In the first, firms preset prices in domestic currency and let prices in foreign currency be ...
Competitive devaluations: a welfare-based approach
This paper studies the mechanism of international transmission of exchange rate shocks within a three-country Center-Periphery model, providing a choice-theoretic framework for the policy analysis and empirical assessment of competitive devaluations. If relative prices and terms of trade exhibit some flexibility conforming to the law of one price, a devaluation by one country is beggar-thy-neighbor relative to another country through its effects on cost-competitiveness in a third market. Yet, due to direct bilateral trade between the two countries, there is a large range of parameter values ...
The simple geometry of transmission and stabilization in closed and open economies
This paper provides an introduction to the recent literature on macroeconomic stabilization in closed and open economies. We present a stylized theoretical framework, illustrating its main properties with the help of an intuitive graphical apparatus. Among the issues we discuss are optimal monetary policy and the welfare gains from macroeconomic stabilization, the international transmission of real and monetary shocks and the role of exchange rate pass-through, and the design of optimal exchange rate regimes and monetary coordination among interdependent economies.
International dimensions of optimal monetary policy
This paper provides a baseline general-equilibrium model of optimal monetary policy among interdependent economies with monopolistic firms that set prices one period in advance. Strict adherence to inward-looking policy objectives such as the stabilization of domestic output cannot be optimal when firms' markups are exposed to currency fluctuations. Such policies induce excessive volatility in exchange rates and foreign sales revenue, leading exporters to set higher prices in response to higher profit risk. In general, optimal rules trade off a larger domestic output gap against lower import ...
Paper tigers? A model of the Asian crisis
This paper develops an interpretation of the Asian meltdown focused on moral hazard as the common source of overinvestment, excessive external borrowing, and current account deficits. To the extent that foreign creditors are willing to lend to domestic agents against future bail-out revenue from the government, unprofitable projects and cash shortfalls are refinanced through external borrowing. While public deficits need not be high before a crisis, the eventual refusal of foreign creditors to refinance the country's cumulative losses forces the government to step in and guarantee the ...
Productivity and the dollar
This paper investigates the role of shocks to U.S. productivity and demand in driving the real value of the dollar, and the dynamics of the U.S. trade balance. Using sign restrictions based on robust predictions by standard theory, we identify shocks that increase domestic labor productivity and output in manufacturing (our measure of U.S. tradables), relative to an aggregate of other industrial countries including the rest of the G7, while driving down (up in the case of demand) the relative price of tradables (in accord to Harrod-Balassa-Samuelson effects). Consistent with previous results ...
The international dimension of productivity and demand shocks in the U.S. economy
Identifying productivity and real demand shocks in the US with sign restrictions based on standard theory, we provide evidence on real and financial channels of their international propagation. Productivity gains in US manufacturing have substantial macroeconomic effects, raising US consumption, investment and the terms of trade, relative to the rest of the world, while lowering US net exports. Significant international financial adjustment occurs via a rise in the global value of the US stock market, portfolio shifts in US foreign assets and liabilities, and especially real dollar ...
Optimal monetary policy in open economies
Research in the international dimensions of optimal monetary policy has long been inspired by a set of fascinating questions, shaping the policy debate in at least two eras of progressive cross-border integration of goods, factors, and assets markets in the years after World War I and from Bretton Woods to today. Namely, should monetary policy respond to international variables such as exchange rates, global business cycle conditions, or global imbalances beyond their in uence on the domestic output gap and inflation? Do exchange rate movements have desirable stabilization and allocative ...
Exchange Rate Misalignment and External Imbalances: What is the Optimal Monetary Policy Response?
How should monetary policy respond to capital inflows that appreciate the currency, widen the current account deficit and cause domestic overheating? Using the workhorse open-macro monetary model, we derive a quadratic approximation of the utility-based global loss function in incomplete market economies, solve for the optimal targeting rules under cooperation and characterize the constrained-optimal allocation. The answer is sharp: the optimal monetary stance is contractionary if the exchange rate pass-through (ERPT) on import prices is incomplete, expansionary if ERPT is complete–implying ...
Macroeconomics of international price discrimination
This paper builds a baseline two-country model of real and monetary transmission under optimal international price discrimination. Distributing traded goods to consumers requires nontradables; because of distributive trade, the price elasticity of export demand depends on the exchange rate. Profit-maximizing monopolistic firms drive a wedge between wholesale and retail prices across countries. This entails possibly large deviations from the law of one price and incomplete pass-through on import prices. Yet, consistent with expenditure-switching effects, a nominal depreciation generally ...