IDEAS home Printed from
MyIDEAS: Log in (now much improved!) to save this article

Order flows and the exchange rate disconnect puzzle

  • Evans, Martin D.D.

The aim of this paper is to establish the link between the high frequency dynamics of spot exchange rates and developments in the macroeconomy. To do so, I first present a theoretical model of exchange-rate determination that bridges the gap between existing microstructure and traditional models. The model examines how dispersed microeconomic information known to individual agents outside the foreign exchange market is aggregated and transmitted to dealers via transaction flows (i.e., order flow); and how the information is then embedded in the spot exchange rate. I then report empirical evidence that strongly supports the presence of the link between the macroeconomy, order flow, and high frequency exchange rate returns implied by the model. In fact, my empirical results indicate that between 20 and 30% of the variance in excess currency returns over one- and two-month horizons can be linked back to developments in the macroeconomy. This level of explanatory power is an order of magnitude higher than that found in traditional models -- even the newly developed monetary models incorporating central banks reaction functions. Moreover, it provides a straightforward solution to the exchange-rate disconnect puzzle. Namely, the high frequency behavior of spot exchange rates reflects the flow of new information reaching dealers concerning the slowly evolving state of the macroeconomy, rather than the effects of shocks that drive rapidly changing macroeconomic conditions.

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

File URL:
Download Restriction: Full text for ScienceDirect subscribers only

As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Journal of International Economics.

Volume (Year): 80 (2010)
Issue (Month): 1 (January)
Pages: 58-71

in new window

Handle: RePEc:eee:inecon:v:80:y:2010:i:1:p:58-71
Contact details of provider: Web page:

References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:

as in new window
  1. Martin D. D. Evans & Richard K. Lyons, 2006. "Understanding order flow," International Journal of Finance & Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 11(1), pages 3-23.
  2. David W. Berger & Alain P. Chaboud & Sergey V. Chernenko & Edward Howorka & Jonathan H. Wright, 2006. "Order flow and exchange rate dynamics in electronic brokerage system data," International Finance Discussion Papers 830, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  3. Richard Payne, 2003. "Macroeconomic news, order flows and exchange rates," FMG Discussion Papers dp475, Financial Markets Group.
  4. Meese, Richard A. & Rogoff, Kenneth, 1983. "Empirical exchange rate models of the seventies : Do they fit out of sample?," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 14(1-2), pages 3-24, February.
  5. Eric van Wincoop & Philippe Bacchetta, 2003. "Can Information Heterogeneity Explain the Exchange Rate Determination Puzzle?," NBER Working Papers 9498, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Dominguez, Kathryn M.E. & Panthaki, Freyan, 2006. "What defines `news' in foreign exchange markets?," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 25(1), pages 168-198, February.
  7. Dagfinn Rime & Lucio Sarno & Elvira Sojli, 2007. "Exchange rate forecasting, order flow and macroeconomic information," Working Paper 2007/02, Norges Bank.
  8. Evans, Martin D.D. & Lyons, Richard K., 2008. "How is macro news transmitted to exchange rates?," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 88(1), pages 26-50, April.
  9. Engel, Charles & West, Kenneth D., 2003. "Exchange rates and fundamentals," Working Paper Series 0248, European Central Bank.
  10. Nelson C. Mark, 2009. "Changing Monetary Policy Rules, Learning, and Real Exchange Rate Dynamics," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 41(6), pages 1047-1070, 09.
  11. Maurice Obstfeld & Kenneth Rogoff & Ben Bernanke & Kenneth Rogoff, . "The Six Major Puzzles in International Macroeconomics: Is there a Common Cause?," Working Paper 32326, Harvard University OpenScholar.
  12. Charles Engel & Nelson C. Mark & Kenneth D. West, 2007. "Exchange Rate Models Are Not as Bad as You Think," NBER Working Papers 13318, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  13. Richard K. Lyons, 1993. "Tests of Microstructural Hypotheses in the Foreign Exchange Market," NBER Working Papers 4471, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  14. Martin D. D. Evans(Georgetown University and NBER), 2005. "Where Are We Now? Real-time Estimates of the Macro Economy," Working Papers gueconwpa~05-05-02, Georgetown University, Department of Economics.
  15. Lyons, Richard K., 1997. "A simultaneous trade model of the foreign exchange hot potato," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 42(3-4), pages 275-298, May.
  16. Martin D.D. Evans & Richard K. Lyons, 2004. "A New Micro Model of Exchange Rate Dynamics," NBER Working Papers 10379, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  17. Martin D.D. Evans & Richard K. Lyons, 2005. "Do Currency Markets Absorb News Quickly?," NBER Working Papers 11041, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  18. Engel, Charles & West, Kenneth D., 2006. "Taylor Rules and the Deutschmark: Dollar Real Exchange Rate," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 38(5), pages 1175-1194, August.
  19. Newey, Whitney K & West, Kenneth D, 1987. "A Simple, Positive Semi-definite, Heteroskedasticity and Autocorrelation Consistent Covariance Matrix," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 55(3), pages 703-08, May.
  20. Evans, Martin D. & Lyons, Richard K., 1999. "Order Flow and Exchange Rate Dynamics," Research Program in Finance, Working Paper Series qt0dh1c16w, Research Program in Finance, Institute for Business and Economic Research, UC Berkeley.
  21. Whitney K. Newey & Kenneth D. West, 1994. "Automatic Lag Selection in Covariance Matrix Estimation," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 61(4), pages 631-653.
  22. Clarida, Richard & Gali, Jordi & Gertler, Mark, 1997. "Monetary Policy Rules in Practice: Some International Evidence," Working Papers 97-32, C.V. Starr Center for Applied Economics, New York University.
  23. Mitchel Y. Abolafia (ed.), 2005. "Markets," Books, Edward Elgar Publishing, number 2788, March.
  24. Philippe BACCHETTA & Eric VAN WINCOOP, 2004. "Higher Order Expectations in Asset Pricing," FAME Research Paper Series rp110, International Center for Financial Asset Management and Engineering.
  25. Evans, Martin D. D. & Lyons, Richard K., 2002. "Informational integration and FX trading," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 21(6), pages 807-831, November.
  26. Martin D. D. Evans & Richard K. Lyons, 2007. "Exchange Rate Fundamentals and Order Flow," NBER Working Papers 13151, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  27. Kenneth A. Froot & Tarun Ramadorai, 2005. "Currency Returns, Intrinsic Value, and Institutional-Investor Flows," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 60(3), pages 1535-1566, 06.
  28. Michael Sager & Mark P. Taylor, 2008. "Commercially Available Order Flow Data and Exchange Rate Movements: "Caveat Emptor"," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 40(4), pages 583-625, 06.
  29. Martin D D Evans & Viktoria V Hnatkovska, 2007. "International Financial Integration and the Real Economy," IMF Staff Papers, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 54(2), pages 220-269, June.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eee:inecon:v:80:y:2010:i:1:p:58-71. 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: (Shamier, Wendy)

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 references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link 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 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.

This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.