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Foreign Exchange Interventions Under Inflation Targeting: The Czech Experience

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  • Tomas Holub

Abstract

This paper discusses the role of foreign exchange interventions in the inflation-targeting regime, focusing on the Czech experience since 1998. It proposes criteria for assessing whether the interventions are consistent with the inflation targeting. While the CNB's interventions in mid- 1998 and in 2002 pass these criteria easily, the judgement might be more uncertain concerning the interventions in early-1998 and in 1999/2000. It is also stressed that the literature on managed floating usually ignores the difficulty in defining clear procedural rules for the interventions. This contrasts with the procedures guiding the interest rate decisions under the inflation targeting regime, which may occasionally create tensions in the policy regime, as demonstrated by the Czech experience, too. The interventions' effectiveness in the Czech Republic is also discussed. It seems that sometimes they might have had an immediate impact lasting up to 2 or 3 months, but no strategy can be identified that would work in all episodes. Moreover, even many of the 'successful' interventions were not able to prevent quite prolonged periods of exchange rate overvaluation in 1998 and in 2002. It is concluded that the signalling role of foreign exchange interventions is more important than their 'market-equilibrating effect', implying a rather unstable transmission between the central bank actions and the market reactions. Finally, the paper analyses the sterilisation costs, which are shown to have been quite substantial in the Czech Republic. It is argued that the financial sustainability of the interventions is quite important for their credibility and effectiveness.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Czech National Bank, Research Department in its series Research and Policy Notes with number 2004/01.

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Date of creation: Jan 2004
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Handle: RePEc:cnb:rpnrpn:2004/01

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Keywords: Exchange rate; foreign exchange interventions; inflation targeting; sterilisation.;

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  1. Svensson, L.E.O., 1998. "Inflation Targeting as a Monetary Policy Rule," Papers 646, Stockholm - International Economic Studies.
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  24. Sarno, Lucio & Taylor, Mark P, 2001. "Official Intervention in the Foreign Exchange Market: Is It Effective, and, If So, How Does It Work?," CEPR Discussion Papers 2690, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
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