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Financial contagion, interest rates and the role of the exchange rate as shock absorber in Central and Eastern Europe

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  • Habib, Maurizio Michael

    ()
    (BOFIT)

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    Abstract

    This paper studies the impact of external factors on daily exchange rates and short-term interest rates in the Czech Republic, Hungary and Poland during the period August 1997 – May 2001. I find that neither exchange rates nor interest rates are influenced by short-term German interest rates. Nevertheless, I show that shocks to emerging-market risk premia had a significant impact on exchange rates in all three Central and Eastern European countries and on interest rates in the Czech Republic. In addition, studying the second moment of the variables, I demonstrate that Czech and Polish exchange rates were affected by ‘volatility contagion’ coming from emerging markets. I find also some partial support for the ‘volatility contagion’ hypothesis on Czech interest rates. These findings shed some doubts on the alleged theoretical ability of a floating exchange rate – such as in the Czech Republic – to absorb external shocks and insulate a country's domestic monetary policy completely. However, the spill-over effect on Czech interest rates might be explained by the ‘managed’ nature of the exchange rate regime, thereby re-establishing some credibility of the theory.

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    File URL: http://www.suomenpankki.fi/bofit_en/tutkimus/tutkimusjulkaisut/dp/Documents/dp0702.pdf
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    Bibliographic Info

    Paper provided by Bank of Finland, Institute for Economies in Transition in its series BOFIT Discussion Papers with number 7/2002.

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    Length: 46 pages
    Date of creation: 11 Jul 2002
    Date of revision:
    Handle: RePEc:hhs:bofitp:2002_007

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    Postal: Bank of Finland, BOFIT, P.O. Box 160, FI-00101 Helsinki, Finland
    Phone: + 358 10 831 2268
    Fax: + 358 10 831 2294
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    Web page: http://www.suomenpankki.fi/bofit_en/
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    Keywords: exchange rates; short-term interest rates; volatility; Czech Republic; Hungary; Poland;

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    References

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    1. Zsolt Darvas & György Szapáry, 1999. "Financial Contagion under Different Exchange Rate Regimes," MNB Working Papers 1999/10, Magyar Nemzeti Bank (the central bank of Hungary).
    2. Ricardo Hausmann & Michael Gavin & Carmen Pagés-Serra & Ernesto H. Stein, 1999. "Financial Turmoil and Choice of Exchange Rate Regime," Research Department Publications 4170, Inter-American Development Bank, Research Department.
    3. Bodart, Vincent & Reding, Paul, 1999. "Exchange rate regime, volatility and international correlations on bond and stock markets," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 18(1), pages 133-151, January.
    4. Geert Bekaert & Campbell R. Harvey, 1997. "Emerging Equity Market Volatility," NBER Working Papers 5307, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    5. Lamoureux, Christopher G & Lastrapes, William D, 1990. "Persistence in Variance, Structural Change, and the GARCH Model," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 8(2), pages 225-34, April.
    6. Flood, Robert P & Rose, Andrew K, 1999. "Understanding Exchange Rate Volatility without the Contrivance of Macroeconomics," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 109(459), pages F660-72, November.
    7. Dornbusch, Rudiger & Park, Yung Chul & Claessens, Stijn, 2000. "Contagion: Understanding How It Spreads," World Bank Research Observer, World Bank Group, vol. 15(2), pages 177-97, August.
    8. Martin Scheicher, 2000. "The comovements of the short interest rates in central and east european countries," Prague Economic Papers, University of Economics, Prague, vol. 2000(3).
    9. Hamao, Yasushi & Masulis, Ronald W & Ng, Victor, 1990. "Correlations in Price Changes and Volatility across International Stock Markets," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 3(2), pages 281-307.
    10. Flood, Robert P & Rose, Andrew K, 1993. "Fixing Exchange Rates: A Virtual Quest for Fundamentals," CEPR Discussion Papers 838, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    11. King, Mervyn A & Wadhwani, Sushil, 1990. "Transmission of Volatility between Stock Markets," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 3(1), pages 5-33.
    12. Jacob A. Frenkel & Michael L. Mussa, 1980. "Efficiency of Foreign Exchange Markets and Measures of Turbulence," NBER Working Papers 0476, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    13. Heliodoro Temprano-Arroyo & Robert A. Feldman, 1999. "Selected transition and Mediterranean countries: an institutional primer on EMU and EU accession," The Economics of Transition, The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, vol. 7(3), pages 741-805, November.
    14. Mervyn King & Enrique Sentana & Sushil Wadhwani, 1990. "Volatiltiy and Links Between National Stock Markets," NBER Working Papers 3357, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    15. Sebastian Edwards, 2000. "Interest Rates, Contagion and Capital Controls," NBER Working Papers 7801, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    16. Bollerslev, Tim, 1986. "Generalized autoregressive conditional heteroskedasticity," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 31(3), pages 307-327, April.
    17. Frankel, Jeffrey & Schmukler, Sergio & Serven, Luis, 2000. "Global transmission of interest rates : monetary independence and the currency regime," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2424, The World Bank.
    18. Rockinger, Michael & Urga, Giovanni, 2001. "A Time-Varying Parameter Model to Test for Predictability and Integration in the Stock Markets of Transition Economies," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 19(1), pages 73-84, January.
    19. Dornbusch, Rudiger, 1976. "Expectations and Exchange Rate Dynamics," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 84(6), pages 1161-76, December.
    20. Frenkel, Jacob A & Mussa, Michael L, 1980. "The Efficiency of Foreign Exchange Markets and Measures of Turbulence," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 70(2), pages 374-81, May.
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    Cited by:
    1. Fabrizio Coricelli & Boštjan Jazbec & Igor Masten, 2004. "Exchange Rate Policy and Inflation in Acceding Countries: The Role of Pass-through," William Davidson Institute Working Papers Series 2004-674, William Davidson Institute at the University of Michigan.
    2. Jacek Rostowski, 2003. "When Should the Central Europeans Join EMU?," CASE Network Studies and Analyses 0253, CASE-Center for Social and Economic Research.
    3. Sébastien Wälti, 2003. "Contagion and interdependence among Central European economies: the impact of common external shocks," IHEID Working Papers 02-2003, Economics Section, The Graduate Institute of International Studies.

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