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A Modern Reconsideration of the Theory of Optimal Currency Areas

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  • Giancarlo Corsetti

Abstract

What can be learnt from revisiting the Optimal Currency Areas (OCA) theory 50 years from its birth, in light of recent advances in open economy macro and monetary theory? This paper presents a stylized micro-founded model of the costs of adopting a common currency, relative to an ideal benchmark in which domestic monetary authorities pursue country-specific efficient stabilization. Costs from (a) limiting monetary autonomy and (b) giving up exchange rate flexibility are examined in turn. These costs will generally be of the same magnitude as the costs of the business cycle. However, to the extent that exchange rates do not perform the stabilizing role envisioned by traditional OCA theory, a common monetary policy can be as efficient as nationally differentiated policies, even when shocks are strongly asymmetric, provided that the composition of aggregate spending tends to be symmetric at unionwide level. Convergence in consumption (and spending) patterns thus emerges as a possible novel attribute of countries participating in an efficient currency area.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by European University Institute in its series Economics Working Papers with number ECO2008/12.

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Date of creation: 2008
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Handle: RePEc:eui:euiwps:eco2008/12

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Keywords: Optimum Currency Area; optimal monetary policy; costs of business cycle; exchange rate regime; international policy cooperation; New Open Economy Macroeconomics;

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  1. Obstfeld, Maurice & Rogoff, Kenneth, 1995. "Exchange Rate Dynamics Redux," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 103(3), pages 624-60, June.
  2. Adao, Bernardino & Correia, Maria Isabel Horta & Teles, Pedro, 2006. "On the Relevance of Exchange Rate Regimes for Stabilization Policy," CEPR Discussion Papers 5797, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  3. Andrew Levin & Christopher J. Erceg & Dale W. Henderson, 1999. "Optimal Monetary Policy with Staggered Wage and Price Contracts," Computing in Economics and Finance 1999 1151, Society for Computational Economics.
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  12. Frankel, Jeffrey A & Rose, Andrew K, 1996. "The Endogeneity of the Optimum Currency Area Criteria," CEPR Discussion Papers 1473, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
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  16. Corsetti, Giancarlo & Martin, Philippe & Pesenti, Paolo, 2005. "Productivity Spillovers, Terms of Trade and the 'Home Market Effect'," CEPR Discussion Papers 4964, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  17. Robert E. Lucas Jr., 2003. "Macroeconomic Priorities," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 93(1), pages 1-14, March.
  18. Maurice Obstfeld & Kenneth S. Rogoff, 1996. "Foundations of International Macroeconomics," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262150476, January.
  19. Beetsma, Roel M.W.J. & Jensen, Henrik, 2005. "Monetary and fiscal policy interactions in a micro-founded model of a monetary union," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 67(2), pages 320-352, December.
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  22. Corsetti, Giancarlo & Dedola, Luca, 2005. "A macroeconomic model of international price discrimination," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 67(1), pages 129-155, September.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Beetsma, Roel & Giuliodori, Massimo, 2009. "The Macroeconomic Costs and Benefits of the EMU and other Monetary Unions: An Overview of Recent Research," CEPR Discussion Papers 7500, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  2. Vladimir Gligorov & Anna Iara & Michael Landesmann & Robert Stehrer & Hermine Vidovic, 2008. "Western Balkan Countries: Adjustment Capacity to External Shocks, with a Focus on Labour Markets," wiiw Research Reports 352, The Vienna Institute for International Economic Studies, wiiw.
  3. Groll, Dominik, 2013. "Conditions for a Beneficial Monetary Union under Suboptimal Monetary Policy," Annual Conference 2013 (Duesseldorf): Competition Policy and Regulation in a Global Economic Order 79787, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
  4. Kolasa, Marcin, 2009. "Structural heterogeneity or asymmetric shocks? Poland and the euro area through the lens of a two-country DSGE model," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 26(6), pages 1245-1269, November.
  5. Sousa, Teresa Vasconcelos e, 2013. "Asymmetries in an open economy model," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 33(C), pages 358-380.
  6. Michal SKOREPA, 2013. "Troubles in the Euro Area Periphery: The View through the Lens of a Simple Convergence-Sensitive Optimum Currency Area Index," Czech Journal of Economics and Finance (Finance a uver), Charles University Prague, Faculty of Social Sciences, vol. 63(2), pages 129-151, May.
  7. Alexandra Ferreira-Lopes, 2008. "In or Out? The Welfare Costs of EMU Membership," Working Papers Series 1 ercwp1408, ISCTE-IUL, Business Research Unit (BRU-IUL).
  8. Balogun, Emmanuel Dele, 2009. "Inflation differential in the West African Monetary Zone (WAMZ) area:Implications for unionization," MPRA Paper 13045, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  9. Balogun, Emmanuel Dele, 2008. "An alternative reconsideration of macroeconomic convergence criteria for West African Monetary Zone," MPRA Paper 11367, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  10. Ioana Laura Valeanu, 2012. "Business Cycle Synchronization In The Euro Area," CES Working Papers, Centre for European Studies, Alexandru Ioan Cuza University, vol. 4, pages 429-400, September.
  11. Balogun, Emmanuel Dele, 2009. "Alternative reconsideration of output growth differrential for the West African Monetary Zone," MPRA Paper 13416, University Library of Munich, Germany.

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