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Capital Controls: Myth and Reality - A Portfolio Balance Approach

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  • Nicolas E. Magud
  • Carmen M. Reinhart
  • Kenneth S. Rogoff

Abstract

The literature on capital controls has (at least) four very serious apples-to-oranges problems: (i) There is no unified theoretical framework to analyze the macroeconomic consequences of controls; (ii) there is significant heterogeneity across countries and time in the control measures implemented; (iii) there are multiple definitions of what constitutes a “success” and (iv) the empirical studies lack a common methodology-furthermore these are significantly “overweighted” by a couple of country cases (Chile and Malaysia). In this paper, we attempt to address some of these shortcomings by: being very explicit about what measures are construed as capital controls. Also, given that success is measured so differently across studies, we sought to “standardize” the results of over 30 empirical studies we summarize in this paper. The standardization was done by constructing two indices of capital controls: Capital Controls Effectiveness Index (CCE Index), and Weighted Capital Control Effectiveness Index (WCCE Index). The difference between them lies in that the WCCE controls for the differentiated degree of methodological rigor applied to draw conclusions in each of the considered papers. Inasmuch as possible, we bring to bear the experiences of less well known episodes than those of Chile and Malaysia. Then, using a portfolio balance approach we model the effects of imposing capital controls on short-term flows. We find that there should exist country-specific characteristics for capital controls to be effective. From this simple perspective, this rationalizes why some capital controls were effective and some were not. We also show that the equivalence in effects of price- vs. quantity-capital control are conditional on the level of short–term capital flows.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 16805.

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Date of creation: Feb 2011
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Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:16805

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  1. Rudi Dornbusch, 2001. "Malaysia: Was it Different?," NBER Working Papers 8325, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Reinhart, Vincent R, 2000. "How the Machinery of International Finance Runs with Sand in Its Wheels," Review of International Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 8(1), pages 74-85, February.
  3. Benedict J. Clements & Herman Kamil, 2009. "Are Capital Controls Effective in the 21st Century? the Recent Experience of Colombia," IMF Working Papers 09/30, International Monetary Fund.
  4. Guillermo A. Calvo & Leonardo Leiderman & Carmen M. Reinhart, 1994. "The Capital Inflows Problem: Concepts And Issues," Contemporary Economic Policy, Western Economic Association International, vol. 12(3), pages 54-66, 07.
  5. Reinhart, Carmen & Reinhart, Vincent, 1999. "On the use of reserve requirements in dealing with capital flow problems," MPRA Paper 13703, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  6. Natalia T. Tamirisa, 2004. "Do Macroeconomic Effects of Capital Controls Vary by their Type? Evidence From Malaysia," IMF Working Papers 04/3, International Monetary Fund.
  7. Kaplan, Ethan & Rodrik, Dani, 2001. "Did the Malaysian Capital Controls Work?," CEPR Discussion Papers 2754, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  8. Carmen M. Reinhart & Kenneth S. Rogoff & Miguel A. Savastano, 2003. "Debt Intolerance," NBER Working Papers 9908, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    • Reinhart, Carmen & Rogoff, Kenneth & Savastano, Miguel, 2003. "Debt intolerance," MPRA Paper 13932, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  9. Nicolas Magud & Carmen M. Reinhart, 2005. "Capital Controls: An Evaluation," University of Oregon Economics Department Working Papers 2005-19, University of Oregon Economics Department.
    • Nicolas Magud & Carmen M. Reinhart, 2007. "Capital Controls: An Evaluation," NBER Chapters, in: Capital Controls and Capital Flows in Emerging Economies: Policies, Practices and Consequences, pages 645-674 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Sebastian Edwards, 1999. "How Effective are Capital Controls?," NBER Working Papers 7413, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. Francisco Gallego & Leonardo Hernández & Klaus Schmidt-Hebbel, 1999. "Capital Controls in Chile: Effective? Efficient?," Working Papers Central Bank of Chile 59, Central Bank of Chile.
  12. Leonardo Bartolini & Allan Drazen, 1996. "Capital account liberalization as a signal," Staff Reports 11, Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
  13. Carmen M. Reinhart & R. Todd Smith, 1996. "Too much of a good thing: the macroeconomic effects of taxing capital inflows," Proceedings, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, pages 436-464.
  14. Reinhart, Carmen & Smith, R Todd, 2002. "Temporary controls on capital inflows," MPRA Paper 13863, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  15. Hernán Rincón & Jorge Toro, 2010. "Are Capital Controls and Central Bank Intervention Effective?," BORRADORES DE ECONOMIA 007622, BANCO DE LA REPÚBLICA.
  16. Liliana Rojas-Suárez & Donald J. Mathieson, 1993. "Liberalization of the Capital Account," IMF Occasional Papers 103, International Monetary Fund.
  17. De Gregorio, Jose & Edwards, Sebastian & Valdes, Rodrigo O., 2000. "Controls on capital inflows: do they work?," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 63(1), pages 59-83, October.
  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. Bernard Laurens & Jaime Cardoso, 1998. "Managing Capital Flows," IMF Working Papers 98/168, International Monetary Fund.
  20. Reinhart, Carmen & Calvo, Guillermo, 2002. "Fear of floating," MPRA Paper 14000, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  21. Reinhart, Carmen & Edison, Hali, 2001. "Stopping hot money," MPRA Paper 13862, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  22. Sebastian Edwards, 2007. "Capital Controls and Capital Flows in Emerging Economies: Policies, Practices and Consequences," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number edwa06-1.
  23. Maurice Obstfeld & Kenneth S. Rogoff, 1996. "Foundations of International Macroeconomics," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262150476, December.
  24. Akira Ariyoshi & Andrei Kirilenko & Inci Ötker & Bernard Laurens & Jorge Iván Canales Kriljenko & Karl Friedrich Habermeier, 2000. "Capital Controls," IMF Occasional Papers 190, International Monetary Fund.
  25. James Tobin, 1978. "A Proposal for International Monetary Reform," Eastern Economic Journal, Eastern Economic Association, vol. 4(3-4), pages 153-159, Jul/Oct.
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