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Large changes in major exchange rates: a chronicle of the 1990s


  • B. J. Lobo


In the continuing effort to understand exchange rate changes, this article chronicles and analyses, for the first time, the proximate reasons for large daily movements in four leading US dollar exchange rates in the 1990s. A sample of 111 events highlights the importance of expectations and the role of subtle political influences on currency markets. While 19% of all events studied had mainly economic reasons, over 60% of all events could be partly or wholly attributed to political factors. Events related to monetary policy changes were the most significant economic factor, while intervention activity and war/coup attempts were the most significant political factors. This research indicates that large changes in the Japanese yen were caused mostly by the political dynamics of the bilateral trade balance, while big moves in the German mark and British pound stemmed mainly from European politico-economic events. The enigmatic Canadian dollar was driven by domestic politics related to the Quebec secession issue.

Suggested Citation

  • B. J. Lobo, 2002. "Large changes in major exchange rates: a chronicle of the 1990s," Applied Financial Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 12(11), pages 805-811.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:apfiec:v:12:y:2002:i:11:p:805-811 DOI: 10.1080/09603100110088157

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Fama, Eugene F, 1970. "Multiperiod Consumption-Investment Decisions," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 60(1), pages 163-174, March.
    2. Roll, Richard, 1977. "A critique of the asset pricing theory's tests Part I: On past and potential testability of the theory," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 4(2), pages 129-176, March.
    3. Fama, Eugene F & MacBeth, James D, 1973. "Risk, Return, and Equilibrium: Empirical Tests," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 81(3), pages 607-636, May-June.
    4. Kraus, Alan & Litzenberger, Robert H, 1976. "Skewness Preference and the Valuation of Risk Assets," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 31(4), pages 1085-1100, September.
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    Cited by:

    1. Antonakakis, Nikolaos, 2012. "Exchange return co-movements and volatility spillovers before and after the introduction of euro," Journal of International Financial Markets, Institutions and Money, Elsevier, vol. 22(5), pages 1091-1109.
    2. Schepp, Zoltán, 2003. "Befektetői horizont és a „forwardrejtély”
      [The investor horizon and the ‘forward puzzle’]
      ," Közgazdasági Szemle (Economic Review - monthly of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences), Közgazdasági Szemle Alapítvány (Economic Review Foundation), vol. 0(11), pages 939-963.
    3. Farooq Malik & Syed Hassan, 2004. "Modeling volatility in sector index returns with GARCH models using an iterated algorithm," Journal of Economics and Finance, Springer;Academy of Economics and Finance, vol. 28(2), pages 211-225, June.

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