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Capital account liberalization and disinflation in the 1990s

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  • William C. Gruben
  • Darryl McLeod

Abstract

As a way of addressing arguments in the literature (Rodrik, 1998) that the act of capital account liberalization leads to inflation, we present a simple theoretical model in which capital account liberalization raises the absolute value of the elasticity of money demand because agents have broader money holding options than under a closed capital account. The central bank maximizes seigniorage, balancing the benefits of higher inflation against potential losses of foreign currency reserves. The optimum seigniorage-maximizing rate of inflation falls when capital controls are loosened, as a result of the impact of liberalization on the elasticity of money demand. In a series of OLS and instrumental variables models that are heavily influenced by the work of Romer (1993) on current account openness and Grilli and Milesi-Ferretti (1995) on capital account openness, we test the impact of the act capital account liberalization (and many other factors) on inflation and find results that are consistent with our simple theoretical model and that are inconsistent with the recent work of Rodrik (1998). ; Economic Research Working Paper 0104

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Paper provided by Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas in its series Center for Latin America Working Papers with number 0101.

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Date of creation: 2001
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Handle: RePEc:fip:feddcl:0101

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  1. Michael P. Dooley, 1995. "A Survey of Academic Literature on Controls over International Capital Transactions," NBER Working Papers 5352, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. David Romer, 1991. "Openness and inflation: theory and evidence," Proceedings, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, issue Nov.
  3. Dani Rodrik & Andres Velasco, 1999. "Short-Term Capital Flows," NBER Working Papers 7364, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Mankiw, N. Gregory, 1987. "The optimal collection of seigniorage : Theory and evidence," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 20(2), pages 327-341, September.
  5. José de Gregorio, 1999. "Financial integration, financial development and economic growth," Estudios de Economia, University of Chile, Department of Economics, vol. 26(2 Year 19), pages 137-161, December.
  6. Cukierman, Alex & Edwards, Sebastian & Tabellini, Guido, 1992. "Seigniorage and Political Instability," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 82(3), pages 537-55, June.
  7. Robert J. Barro, 1984. "Inflationary Finance under Discrepion and Rules," NBER Working Papers 0889, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Robert J. Barro & Paul M. Romer, 1991. "Economic Growth," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number barr91-1.
    • Robert J. Barro & Paul Romer, 1993. "Economic Growth," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number barr93-1.
  9. Richard N. Cooper, 1999. "Should Capital Controls be Banished?," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 30(1), pages 89-142.
  10. Davidson, Russell & MacKinnon, James G., 1993. "Estimation and Inference in Econometrics," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780195060119.
  11. Vittorio Grilli & Gian-Maria Milesi-Ferretti, 1995. "Economic Effects and Structural Determinants of Capital Controls," IMF Working Papers 95/31, International Monetary Fund.
  12. Barro, Robert J & Gordon, David B, 1983. "A Positive Theory of Monetary Policy in a Natural Rate Model," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 91(4), pages 589-610, August.
  13. Michael Klein & Giovanni Olivei, 1999. "Capital account liberalization, financial depth, and economic growth," Working Papers 99-6, Federal Reserve Bank of Boston.
  14. Lane, Philip R., 1997. "Inflation in open economies," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 42(3-4), pages 327-347, May.
  15. Marta Campillo & Jeffrey A. Miron, 1996. "Why Does Inflation Differ Across Countries?," NBER Working Papers 5540, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  16. Jeffrey A. Frankel, 1993. "On Exchange Rates," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262061546, December.
  17. Christina D. Romer & David H. Romer, 1998. "Monetary Policy and the Well-Being of the Poor," NBER Working Papers 6793, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  18. Eliana Cardoso & Ilan Goldfajn, 1998. "Capital Flows to Brazil: The Endogeneity of Capital Controls," IMF Staff Papers, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 45(1), pages 161-202, March.
  19. Cukierman, Alex & Webb, Steven B & Neyapti, Bilin, 1992. "Measuring the Independence of Central Banks and Its Effect on Policy Outcomes," World Bank Economic Review, World Bank Group, vol. 6(3), pages 353-98, September.
  20. Kydland, Finn E & Prescott, Edward C, 1977. "Rules Rather Than Discretion: The Inconsistency of Optimal Plans," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 85(3), pages 473-91, June.
  21. Eliana Cardoso, 1992. "Inflation and Poverty," NBER Working Papers 4006, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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Cited by:
  1. Lekshmi Nair, 2012. "Policy Disciplining Effect of Capital Account Openness in India," Transition Studies Review, Springer, vol. 19(1), pages 43-57, September.

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