IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/cai/reofsp/reof_132_0287.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

The Euro Plus Pact. Competitiveness and external capital flows in the EU countries

Author

Listed:
  • Hubert Gabrisch
  • Karsten Staehr

Abstract

The Euro Plus Pact was approved by 23 EU countries in March 2011. The Pact stipulates a range of quantitative targets meant to strengthen competitiveness and convergence with the ultimate aim of preventing the accumulation of unsustainable financial imbalances. This paper uses Granger causality tests and vector autoregressive models to assess the short-term linkages between changes in the relative unit labour cost and changes in the current account balance. The sample consists of data for 27 EU countries for the period 1995?2012. The main finding is that changes in the current account balance precedes changes in relative unit labour costs, while there is no discernable effect in the opposite direction. This suggests that the divergence in the unit labour cost between the countries in Northern Europe and countries in Southern and Central and Eastern Europe prior to the global financial crisis partly was the result of capital flows from the core of Europe to its periphery. The results also suggest that measures in the Euro Plus Pact to restrain unit labour costs may not have immediate effects on possible current account imbalances.

Suggested Citation

  • Hubert Gabrisch & Karsten Staehr, 2014. "The Euro Plus Pact. Competitiveness and external capital flows in the EU countries," Revue de l'OFCE, Presses de Sciences-Po, vol. 0(1), pages 287-325.
  • Handle: RePEc:cai:reofsp:reof_132_0287
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.cairn.info/load_pdf.php?ID_ARTICLE=REOF_132_0287
    Download Restriction: free

    File URL: http://www.cairn.info/revue-de-l-ofce-2014-1-page-287.htm
    Download Restriction: free

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Mohsen Bahmani-Oskooee & Orhan Kara, 2003. "Relative Responsiveness of Trade Flows to a Change in Prices and Exchange Rate," International Review of Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 17(3), pages 293-308.
    2. Obstfeld, Maurice & Rogoff, Kenneth, 1995. "Exchange Rate Dynamics Redux," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 103(3), pages 624-660, June.
    3. Guillermo A. Calvo & Leonardo Leiderman & Carmen M. Reinhart, 1996. "Inflows of Capital to Developing Countries in the 1990s," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 10(2), pages 123-139, Spring.
    4. Ansgar Belke & Christian Dreger, 2011. "Current Account Imbalances in the Euro Area: Catching up or Competitiveness?," Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin 1106, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research.
    5. Sebastian Dullien & Ulrich Fritsche, 2008. "Does the dispersion of unit labor cost dynamics in the EMU imply long-run divergence?," International Economics and Economic Policy, Springer, vol. 5(3), pages 269-295, November.
    6. Fischer, Christoph, 2007. "An assessment of the trends in international price competitiveness among EMU countries," Discussion Paper Series 1: Economic Studies 2007,08, Deutsche Bundesbank.
    7. Arellano, Manuel & Bover, Olympia, 1995. "Another look at the instrumental variable estimation of error-components models," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 68(1), pages 29-51, July.
    8. Boyd, Derick & Caporale, Gugielmo Maria & Smith, Ron, 2001. "Real Exchange Rate Effects on the Balance of Trade: Cointegration and the Marshall-Lerner Condition," International Journal of Finance & Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 6(3), pages 187-200, July.
    9. Carmen Reinhart & Vincent Reinhart, 2009. "Capital Flow Bonanzas: An Encompassing View of the Past and Present," NBER Chapters,in: NBER International Seminar on Macroeconomics 2008, pages 9-62 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    10. Corden, W M, 1984. "Booming Sector and Dutch Disease Economics: Survey and Consolidation," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 36(3), pages 359-380, November.
    11. Sanchez , Jose Luis Diaz & Varoudakis, Aristomene, 2013. "Growth and competitiveness as factors of Eurozone external imbalances : evidence and policy implications," Policy Research Working Paper Series 6732, The World Bank.
    12. Jonathan D. Ostry, 1988. "The Balance of Trade, Terms of Trade, and Real Exchange Rate: An Intertemporal Optimizing Framework," IMF Staff Papers, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 35(4), pages 541-573, December.
    13. Morande, Felipe G., 1988. "Domestic currency appreciation and foreign capital inflows: What comes first? (Chile, 1977-1982)," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 7(4), pages 447-466.
    14. Guillermo A. Calvo & Leonardo Leiderman & Carmen M. Reinhart, 1993. "Capital Inflows and Real Exchange Rate Appreciation in Latin America: The Role of External Factors," IMF Staff Papers, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 40(1), pages 108-151, March.
    15. Christian Saborowski, 2009. "Capital Inflows and the Real Exchange Rate; Can Financial Development Cure the Dutch Disease?," IMF Working Papers 09/20, International Monetary Fund.
    16. Holger Zemanek & Ansgar Belke & Gunther Schnabl, 2009. "Current Account Imbalances and Structural Adjustment in the Euro Area: How to Rebalance Competitiveness," Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin 895, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research.
    17. Giavazzi, Francesco & Spaventa, Luigi, 2010. "Why the current account may matter in a monetary union: Lessons from the financial crisis in the Euro area," CEPR Discussion Papers 8008, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    18. Nils Holinski & Clemens J. M. Kool & Joan Muysken, 2012. "Persistent macroeconomic imbalances in the Euro area: causes and consequences," Review, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, issue Jan, pages 1-20.
    19. Rose, Andrew K., 1991. "The role of exchange rates in a popular model of international trade : Does the 'Marshall-Lerner' condition hold?," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 30(3-4), pages 301-316, May.
    20. Bassem M Kamar & Damyana Bakardzhieva & Samy Ben Naceur & Sami Ben Naceur, 2010. "The Impact of Capital and Foreign Exchange Flowson the Competitiveness of Developing Countries," IMF Working Papers 10/154, International Monetary Fund.
    21. Blundell, Richard & Bond, Stephen, 1998. "Initial conditions and moment restrictions in dynamic panel data models," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 87(1), pages 115-143, August.
    22. De Grauwe, Paul, 2011. "Governance of a Fragile Eurozone," CEPS Papers 5523, Centre for European Policy Studies.
    23. Prema-Chandra Athukorala & Sarath Rajapatirana, 2003. "Capital Inflows and the Real Exchange Rate: A Comparative Study of Asia and Latin America," The World Economy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 26(4), pages 613-637, April.
    24. Leslie LIPSCHITZ & Timothy LANE & Alex MOURMOURAS, 2006. "Capital Flows to Transition Economies: Master or Servant? (in English)," Czech Journal of Economics and Finance (Finance a uver), Charles University Prague, Faculty of Social Sciences, vol. 56(5-6), pages 202-222, May.
    25. Gunther Schnabl & Holger Zemanek, 2011. "Inter-temporal savings, current account trends and asymmetric shocks in a heterogeneous European Monetary Union," Intereconomics: Review of European Economic Policy, Springer;German National Library of Economics;Centre for European Policy Studies (CEPS), vol. 46(3), pages 153-160, June.
    26. Groll, Dominik & van Roye, Björn, 2011. "Price competitiveness divergence in the euro area: The level matters!," Kiel Policy Brief 24, Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW).
    27. Emmanuel K. K. Lartey, 2008. "Capital Inflows, Dutch Disease Effects, and Monetary Policy in a Small Open Economy," Review of International Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 16(5), pages 971-989, November.
    28. repec:zbw:rwirep:0241 is not listed on IDEAS
    29. Kim, Yoonbai, 2000. "Causes of capital flows in developing countries," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 19(2), pages 235-253, April.
    30. Marco Buti & Nicolas Carnot, 2012. "The EMU Debt Crisis: Early Lessons and Reforms," Journal of Common Market Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 50(6), pages 899-911, November.
    31. Florence Jaumotte & Piyaporn Sodsriwiboon, 2010. "Current Account Imbalances in the Southern Euro Area," IMF Working Papers 10/139, International Monetary Fund.
    32. G. Russell Kincaid & Martin Fetherston & Peter Isard & Hamid Faruqee, 2001. "Methodology for Current Account and Exchange Rate Assessments," IMF Occasional Papers 209, International Monetary Fund.
    33. Edwards, Sebastian, 1988. "Real and monetary determinants of real exchange rate behavior: Theory and evidence from developing countries," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 29(3), pages 311-341, November.
    34. Hubert Gabrisch, 2011. "A Macroeconomist’s View on EU Governance Reform: Why and How to Establish Policy Coordination?," Economic Annals, Faculty of Economics, University of Belgrade, vol. 56(191), pages 69-88, October-D.
    35. Engelbert Stockhammer, 2011. "Peripheral Europe's debt and German wages: the role of wage policy in the Euro area," International Journal of Public Policy, Inderscience Enterprises Ltd, vol. 7(1/2/3), pages 83-96.
    36. John Williamson, 1994. "Estimating Equilibrium Exchange Rates," Peterson Institute Press: All Books, Peterson Institute for International Economics, number 17.
    37. Mouhamadou Sy & Hamidreza Tabarraei, 2010. "Capital inflows and exchange rate in LDCs: The Dutch disease problem revisited," PSE Working Papers halshs-00574955, HAL.
    38. Desmond Dinan, 2012. "Governance and Institutions: Impact of the Escalating Crisis," Journal of Common Market Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 50, pages 85-98, September.
    39. Peter Isard, 2007. "Equilibrium Exchange Rates; Assessment Methodologies," IMF Working Papers 07/296, International Monetary Fund.
    40. Corden, W Max & Neary, J Peter, 1982. "Booming Sector and De-Industrialisation in a Small Open Economy," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 92(368), pages 825-848, December.
    41. Esteban Perez-Caldentey & Matias Vernengo, 2012. "The Euro Imbalances and Financial Deregulation: A Post-Keynesian Interpretation of the European Debt Crisis," Economics Working Paper Archive wp_702, Levy Economics Institute.
    42. Jacques Delors, 2013. "Economic Governance in the European Union: Past, Present and Future," Journal of Common Market Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 51(2), pages 169-178, March.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. Claudius Gräbner & Philipp Heimberger & Jakob Kapeller & Bernhard Schütz, 2017. "Is Europe disintegrating? Macroeconomic divergence, structural polarization, trade and fragility," Economics working papers 2017-15, Department of Economics, Johannes Kepler University Linz, Austria.
    2. Walter Paternesi Meloni, 2017. "Austerity & Competitiveness in the Eurozone: a misleading linkage," Departmental Working Papers of Economics - University 'Roma Tre' 0223, Department of Economics - University Roma Tre.
    3. Gabrisch, Hubert, 2015. "Cross-border finance, trade imbalances and competitiveness in the euro area," MPRA Paper 68518, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    4. Juan Carlos Cuestas & Karsten Staehr & Javier Ordóñez, 2018. "Unit Labour Costs and the Dynamics of Output and Unemployment in the Southern European Crisis Countries," TUT Economic Research Series 41, Department of Finance and Economics, Tallinn University of Technology.
    5. Mariarosaria Comunale, 2016. "A Closer Look at EU Current Accounts," CEIS Research Paper 393, Tor Vergata University, CEIS, revised 11 Aug 2016.
    6. Georg Feigl & Josef Zuckerstätter, 2012. "Wettbewerbs(des)orientierung," Working Paper Reihe der AK Wien - Materialien zu Wirtschaft und Gesellschaft 117, Kammer für Arbeiter und Angestellte für Wien, Abteilung Wirtschaftswissenschaft und Statistik.
    7. repec:psl:pslqrr:2017:23 is not listed on IDEAS
    8. repec:wfo:wstudy:58136 is not listed on IDEAS
    9. Pablo Duarte & Gunther Schnabl, 2015. "Macroeconomic Policy Making, Exchange Rate Adjustment and Current Account Imbalances in Emerging Markets," Review of Development Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 19(3), pages 531-544, August.
    10. Hamid Raza & Gylfi Zoega & Stephen Kinsella, 2017. "Capital inflows, crisis and recovery in small open economies," Birkbeck Working Papers in Economics and Finance 1709, Birkbeck, Department of Economics, Mathematics & Statistics.
    11. Mariarosaria Comunale & Jeroen Hessel, 2014. "Current account imbalances in the Euro area: Competitiveness or financial cycle?," DNB Working Papers 443, Netherlands Central Bank, Research Department.
    12. Ludek Kouba & Michal Madr & Danuse Nerudova & Petr Rozmahel, 2016. "Policy Autonomy, Coordination or Harmonization in the Persistently Heterogeneous European Union?," DANUBE: Law and Economics Review, European Association Comenius - EACO, issue 1, pages 53-71, March.
    13. A. Berthou. & G. Gaulier., 2013. "Wage dynamics and current account rebalancing in the euro area," Quarterly selection of articles - Bulletin de la Banque de France, Banque de France, issue 30, pages 71-91, Summer.
    14. Pilar Beneito & Carlos Chafer, 2017. "Current Account Imbalances and Cost Competitiveness: The Role of the Euro," Working Papers 1703, Department of Applied Economics II, Universidad de Valencia.
    15. Bertola, Giuseppe, 2016. "Labor policies and capital mobility in theory and in EMU," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 87(C), pages 62-77.
    16. repec:kap:iecepo:v:15:y:2018:i:2:d:10.1007_s10368-017-0402-6 is not listed on IDEAS
    17. Raphael Fischer & Gunther Schnabl, 2018. "Regional heterogeneity, the rise of public debt and monetary policy in post-bubble Japan: lessons for the EMU," International Economics and Economic Policy, Springer, vol. 15(2), pages 405-428, April.
    18. Benedicta Marzinotto, 2017. "Euro area macroeconomic imbalances and their asymmetric reversal: the link between financial integration and income inequality," Economia Politica: Journal of Analytical and Institutional Economics, Springer;Fondazione Edison, vol. 34(1), pages 83-104, April.
    19. repec:kap:iecepo:v:15:y:2018:i:2:d:10.1007_s10368-017-0395-1 is not listed on IDEAS
    20. A. Berthou. & P. Bourgeon. & V. Vicard., 2013. "Firm competitiveness: summary report on the CompNet conference - Banque de France – 20 and 21 September 2012," Quarterly selection of articles - Bulletin de la Banque de France, Banque de France, issue 30, pages 35-44, Summer.
    21. Benedicta Marzinotto, 2016. "Income Inequality and Macroeconomic Imbalances under EMU," LEQS – LSE 'Europe in Question' Discussion Paper Series 110, European Institute, LSE.
    22. Gheorghe HURDUZEU & Maria-Isadora LAZAR, 2015. "An Assessment of Economic Stability under the New European Economic Governance," Management Dynamics in the Knowledge Economy Journal, College of Management, National University of Political Studies and Public Administration, vol. 3(2), pages 301-315, June.
    23. Stockhammer, Engelbert & Constantine, Collin & Reissl, Severin, 2016. "Neoliberalism, trade imbalances and economic policy in the Eurozone crisis," Economics Discussion Papers 2016-3, School of Economics, Kingston University London.
    24. Staehr, Karsten & Vermeulen, Robert, 2016. "How competitiveness shocks affect macroeconomic performance across euro area countries," Working Paper Series 1940, European Central Bank.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    European integration; policy coordination; unit labour costs; current account imbalances; economic crisis;

    JEL classification:

    • E61 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook - - - Policy Objectives; Policy Designs and Consistency; Policy Coordination
    • F36 - International Economics - - International Finance - - - Financial Aspects of Economic Integration
    • F41 - International Economics - - Macroeconomic Aspects of International Trade and Finance - - - Open Economy Macroeconomics

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:cai:reofsp:reof_132_0287. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Jean-Baptiste de Vathaire). General contact details of provider: http://www.cairn.info/revue-de-l-ofce.htm .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.