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Financial versus Monetary Mercantilism-Long-run View of Large International Reserves Hoarding

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  • Aizenman, Joshua
  • Lee, Jaewoo

Abstract

The sizable hoarding of international reserves by several East Asian countries has been frequently attributed to a modern version of monetary mercantilism – hoarding international reserves in order to improve competitiveness. From a long-run perspective, manufacturing exporters in East Asia adopted financial mercantilism—subsidizing the cost of capital— during decades of high growth. They switched to hoarding large international reserves when growth faltered, making it harder to disentangle the monetary mercantilism from precautionary response to the heritage of past financial mercantilism. Monetary mercantilism also lowers the cost of hoarding, but may be associated with negative externalities leading to competitive hoarding.

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Paper provided by Department of Economics, UC Santa Cruz in its series Santa Cruz Department of Economics, Working Paper Series with number qt5r95t1xf.

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Date of creation: 01 Feb 2007
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Handle: RePEc:cdl:ucscec:qt5r95t1xf

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Keywords: Mercantilism; cost of capital; competitive real depreciations; self insurance; precautionary hoarding;

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  1. Pablo García & Claudio Soto, 2006. "Large Hoardings of International Reserves: Are They Worth It?," Central Banking, Analysis, and Economic Policies Book Series, Central Bank of Chile, in: Ricardo Caballero & César Calderón & Luis Felipe Céspedes & Norman Loayza (Series Editor) & Klaus (ed.), External Vulnerability and Preventive Policies, edition 1, volume 10, chapter 6, pages 171-206 Central Bank of Chile.
  2. Aizenman, Joshua & LEE, JAEWOO, 2005. "International Reserves: Precautionary versus Mercantilist Views, Theory and Evidence," Santa Cruz Department of Economics, Working Paper Series, Department of Economics, UC Santa Cruz qt44g3n2j8, Department of Economics, UC Santa Cruz.
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