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Conditions for Optimality of a Currency Area

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  • George Demopoulos

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  • Nicholas Yannacopoulos

Abstract

Two approaches to the theory of OCA are distinguished in this paper. The first, called the marginalistic approach, attempts to define the OCA from the point of view of a single country, and the second examines the optimality of a currency area of a given membership. The marginalistic approach and its limitations are discussed first. Then, the paper proceeds to the second approach which is discussed in the context of the cooperative game theory in characteristic function form; it argues that a currency area is optimal when the welfare functions of its constituent members are in the core. This implies that the welfare functions of all constituent members of the currency area are maximized and hence they are all better off with a common currency rather than with their own national currencies; hence, no member country has the intention to abandon the currency area. The paper concludes that the condition for the optimality of a currency area independently of the degree of economic similarity of its constituents requires that the characteristic function must exhibit non decreasing returns with respect to its size. Copyright Kluwer Academic Publishers 1999

Suggested Citation

  • George Demopoulos & Nicholas Yannacopoulos, 1999. "Conditions for Optimality of a Currency Area," Open Economies Review, Springer, vol. 10(3), pages 289-303, July.
  • Handle: RePEc:kap:openec:v:10:y:1999:i:3:p:289-303
    DOI: 10.1023/A:1008308203536
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    File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1023/A:1008308203536
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Frankel, Jeffrey A & Rose, Andrew K, 1998. "The Endogeneity of the Optimum Currency Area Criteria," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 108(449), pages 1009-1025, July.
    2. Vaubel, Roland, 1978. "Real exchange-rate changes in the European community : A new approach to the determination of optimum currency areas," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 8(2), pages 319-339, May.
    3. Frankel, J-A & Rose, A-K, 1996. "Economic Structure and the Decision to Adopt a Common Currency," Papers 611, Stockholm - International Economic Studies.
    4. Paul Grauwe, 1996. "The economics of convergence: Towards monetary union in Europe," Review of World Economics (Weltwirtschaftliches Archiv), Springer;Institut für Weltwirtschaft (Kiel Institute for the World Economy), vol. 132(1), pages 1-27, March.
    5. Roland Vaubel, 1976. "Real exchange-rate changes in the European community: The empirical evidence and its implications for European currency unification," Review of World Economics (Weltwirtschaftliches Archiv), Springer;Institut für Weltwirtschaft (Kiel Institute for the World Economy), vol. 112(3), pages 429-470, September.
    6. Jacques Mélitz, 1995. "A suggested reformulation of the theory of optimal currency areas," Open Economies Review, Springer, vol. 6(3), pages 281-298, July.
    7. George S. Tavlas, 1993. "The ‘New’ Theory of Optimum Currency Areas," The World Economy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 16(6), pages 663-685, November.
    8. Melitz, Jacques, 1995. "The current impasse in research on optimum currency areas," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 39(3-4), pages 492-500, April.
    9. Eichengreen, B., 1992. "Should the Maastricht Treaty be Saved?," Princeton Studies in International Economics 74, International Economics Section, Departement of Economics Princeton University,.
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    Cited by:

    1. Guglielmo Maria Caporale & Davide Ciferri & Alessandro Girardi, 2011. "Are The Baltic Countries Ready To Adopt The Euro? A Generalized Purchasing Power Parity Approach," Manchester School, University of Manchester, vol. 79(3), pages 429-454, June.
    2. Daniele Antonucci & Alessandro Girardi, 2005. "Structural changes and deviations from the PPP within the Euro Area," ISAE Working Papers 57, ISTAT - Italian National Institute of Statistics - (Rome, ITALY).

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