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Structural breaks and the equilibrium real effective exchange rate of China: A NATREX approach

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  • You, Kefei
  • Sarantis, Nicholas

Abstract

This paper investigates the equilibrium real effective exchange rate for the Chinese RMB during the post-reform period, 1982–2010. We extend the NATREX model in several important perspectives and apply it for the first time to China. A wide range of economic fundamentals that are unique to the Chinese economy is introduced into the model. We construct a unique set of quarterly data and employ unit root and cointegration tests that can account for multiple endogenous structural breaks. In addition, to capture the evolution of China's foreign trade pattern, we employ time-varying (i.e. 3-year average) trade weights to construct the real effective exchange rate. We find two structural breaks in the cointegration relationship (in 1988 and 1992). Effective terms of trade, demographic factors, liquidity constraints and government investment are significant determinants of the equilibrium real effective exchange rate. The RMB was overvalued against a basket of 14 currencies until mid-1980s. During 1986–2010, it was undervalued in most years except after the Asian financial crisis in 1997. We have found persistent undervaluation from 2004 onwards. However, the misalignment rates are much lower than those reported by previous studies and the undervaluation rate actually declined sharply in 2008. The undervaluation rate rose modestly in 2009 and sharply in 2010, though it is still lower than what has been suggested by other studies.

Suggested Citation

  • You, Kefei & Sarantis, Nicholas, 2012. "Structural breaks and the equilibrium real effective exchange rate of China: A NATREX approach," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 23(4), pages 1146-1163.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:chieco:v:23:y:2012:i:4:p:1146-1163 DOI: 10.1016/j.chieco.2012.08.002
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Zhang, Zhibai & Chen, Langnan, 2014. "A new assessment of the Chinese RMB exchange rate," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 30(C), pages 113-122.
    2. Tang, Bo, 2015. "Real exchange rate and economic growth in China: A cointegrated VAR approach," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 34(C), pages 293-310.
    3. Hoarau, Jean-François, 2013. "Un modèle NATREX synthétique pour une petite économie « développée » ouverte contrainte sur les marchés internationaux de capitaux," L'Actualité Economique, Société Canadienne de Science Economique, vol. 89(4), pages 259-303, Décembre.
    4. Guglielmo Maria Caporale & Luis A. Gil-Alana & Kefei You, 2016. "Exchange Rate Linkages between the ASEAN Currencies, the US Dollar and the Chinese RMB," CESifo Working Paper Series 5995, CESifo Group Munich.
    5. Rughoo, Aarti & You, Kefei, 2016. "Asian financial integration: Global or regional? Evidence from money and bond markets," International Review of Financial Analysis, Elsevier, vol. 48(C), pages 419-434.
    6. Pontines, Victor & You, Kefei, 2015. "Asian Currency Unit (ACU), deviation indicators and exchange rate coordination in East Asia: A panel-based convergence approach," Japan and the World Economy, Elsevier, vol. 36(C), pages 42-55.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    NATREX; Equilibrium real effective exchange rate; Structural breaks; Chinese Renminbi; Misalignments;

    JEL classification:

    • F31 - International Economics - - International Finance - - - Foreign Exchange
    • F32 - International Economics - - International Finance - - - Current Account Adjustment; Short-term Capital Movements
    • F41 - International Economics - - Macroeconomic Aspects of International Trade and Finance - - - Open Economy Macroeconomics
    • C51 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric Modeling - - - Model Construction and Estimation
    • C52 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric Modeling - - - Model Evaluation, Validation, and Selection
    • O53 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economywide Country Studies - - - Asia including Middle East

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