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The illusive quest: Do international capital controls contribute to currency stability?

Listed author(s):
  • Glick, Reuven
  • Hutchison, Michael

We investigate the effectiveness of capital controls in insulating economies from currency crises, focusing in particular on both direct and indirect effects of capital controls and how these relationships may have changed over time in response to global financial liberalization and the greater mobility of international capital. We predict the likelihood of currency crises using standard macroeconomic variables and a probit equation estimation methodology with random effects. We employ a comprehensive panel data set comprised of 69 emerging market and developing economies over 1975-2004. Both standard and duration-adjusted measures of capital control intensity (allowing controls to "depreciate" over time) suggest that capital controls have not effectively insulated economies from currency crises at any time during our sample period. Maintaining real GDP growth and limiting real overvaluation are critical factors preventing currency crises, not capital controls. However, the presence of capital controls greatly increases the sensitivity of currency crises to changes in real GDP growth and real exchange rate overvaluation, making countries more vulnerable to changes in fundamentals. Our model suggests that emerging markets weathered the 2007-2008 crisis relatively well because of strong output growth and exchange rate flexibility that limited overvaluation of their currencies.

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File URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1059-0560(10)00049-3
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Article provided by Elsevier in its journal International Review of Economics & Finance.

Volume (Year): 20 (2011)
Issue (Month): 1 (January)
Pages: 59-70

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Handle: RePEc:eee:reveco:v:20:y:2011:i:1:p:59-70
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/inca/620165

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  1. Sebastian Edwards, 2007. "Capital Controls, Sudden Stops, and Current Account Reversals," NBER Chapters,in: Capital Controls and Capital Flows in Emerging Economies: Policies, Practices and Consequences, pages 73-120 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Chinn, Menzie D. & Ito, Hiro, 2006. "What matters for financial development? Capital controls, institutions, and interactions," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 81(1), pages 163-192, October.
  3. Barry Eichengreen & Poonam Gupta & Ashoka Mody, 2008. "Sudden Stops and IMF-Supported Programs," NBER Chapters,in: Financial Markets Volatility and Performance in Emerging Markets, pages 219-266 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Edwards, Sebastian, 2007. "Capital controls, capital flow contractions, and macroeconomic vulnerability," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 26(5), pages 814-840, September.
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  7. Bartolini, Leonardo & Drazen, Allan, 1997. "Capital-Account Liberalization as a Signal," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 87(1), pages 138-154, March.
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  9. Frankel, Jeffrey A. & Rose, Andrew K., 1996. "Currency crashes in emerging markets: An empirical treatment," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 41(3-4), pages 351-366, November.
  10. Dooley, Michael P & Isard, Peter, 1980. "Capital Controls, Political Risk, and Deviations from Interest-Rate Parity," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 88(2), pages 370-384, April.
  11. 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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  13. Edison, Hali J. & Reinhart, Carmen M., 1999. "Capital controls during financial crises: the cases of Malaysia and Thailand," Proceedings, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, issue Sep, pages 1-36.
  14. Reuven Glick & Xueyan Guo & Michael Hutchison, 2006. "Currency Crises, Capital-Account Liberalization, and Selection Bias," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 88(4), pages 698-714, November.
  15. Vittorio Grilli & Gian Maria Milesi-Ferretti, 1995. "Economic Effects and Structural Determinants of Capital Controls," IMF Staff Papers, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 42(3), pages 517-551, September.
  16. Edison, Hali & Reinhart, Carmen M., 2001. "Stopping hot money," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 66(2), pages 533-553, December.
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  18. Sebastian Edwards, 1999. "Crisis Prevention: Lessons from Mexico and East Asia," NBER Working Papers 7233, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  19. Jonathan David Ostry & Atish R. Ghosh & Karl F Habermeier & Marcos d Chamon & Mahvash S Qureshi & Dennis B. S. Reinhardt, 2010. "Capital Inflows; The Role of Controls," IMF Staff Position Notes 2010/04, International Monetary Fund.
  20. Glick, Reuven & Hutchison, Michael, 2005. "Capital controls and exchange rate instability in developing economies," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 24(3), pages 387-412, April.
  21. Bartolini, Leonardo & Drazen, Allan, 1997. "When liberal policies reflect external shocks, what do we learn?," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 42(3-4), pages 249-273, May.
  22. 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.
  23. Daniel Gros, 1987. "The Effectiveness of Capital Controls: Implications for Monetary Autonomy in the Presence of Incomplete Market Separation," IMF Staff Papers, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 34(4), pages 621-642, December.
  24. Barry J. Eichengreen, 1999. "Toward a New International Financial Architecture: A Practical Post-Asia Agenda," Peterson Institute Press: All Books, Peterson Institute for International Economics, number 51, November.
  25. Barry Eichengreen & Charles Wyplosz, 1993. "The Unstable EMS," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 24(1), pages 51-144.
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