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A Reappraisal of the Border Effect on Relative Price Volatility

  • Yin-Wong Cheung
  • Kon Lai

Engel & Rogers (1996) find that crossing the US-Canada border can considerably raise relative price volatility and that exchange rate fluctuations explain about one-third of the volatility increase. Using a decomposition method, this study re-evaluates the border effect. It is shown that cross-country heterogeneity in price volatility can induce a bias in measuring the border effect unless proper adjustment is made to correct it. We further examine the implication of symmetric sampling for the border effect estimation under the decomposition approach. Two conditions governing the strength of the border effect are identified. In particular, the more dissimilar the price shocks are across countries, the greater the border effect will be. Decomposition estimates also suggest that exchange rate fluctuations actually account for a large majority of the border effect.

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Article provided by Taylor & Francis Journals in its journal International Economic Journal.

Volume (Year): 20 (2006)
Issue (Month): 4 ()
Pages: 495-513

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Handle: RePEc:taf:intecj:v:20:y:2006:i:4:p:495-513
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  1. Mario J. Crucini & Chris I. Telmer & Marios Zachariadis, 2005. "Understanding European Real Exchange Rates," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 95(3), pages 724-738, June.
  2. Charles Engel & John H. Rogers, 1998. "Relative Price Volatility: What Role Does the Border Play?," Discussion Papers in Economics at the University of Washington 0061, Department of Economics at the University of Washington.
  3. Feenstra, Robert C. & Kendall, Jon D., 1997. "Pass-through of exchange rates and purchasing power parity," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 43(1-2), pages 237-261, August.
  4. Yin-wong Cheung & Eiji Fujii, 2005. "Cross-Country Relative Price Volatility: Effects of Market Structure," Working Papers 192005, Hong Kong Institute for Monetary Research.
  5. Engel, C., 1996. "Accounting for U.S. Real Exchange Rate Changes," Working Papers 96-02, University of Washington, Department of Economics.
  6. Engel, Charles & Rogers, John H, 2001. "Violating the Law of One Price: Should We Make a Federal Case Out of It?," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 33(1), pages 1-15, February.
  7. Yuriy Gorodnichenko & Linda Tesar, 2005. "A Re-Examination of the Border Effect," Working Papers 546, Research Seminar in International Economics, University of Michigan.
  8. Charles Engel, 1992. "Real Exchange Rates and Relative Prices: An Empirical Investigation," NBER Working Papers 4231, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Janet Ceglowski, 2003. "The law of one price: intranational evidence for Canada," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 36(2), pages 373-400, May.
  10. Stephen G. Cecchetti & Nelson C. Mark & Robert J. Sonora, 2002. "Price Index Convergence Among United States Cities," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 43(4), pages 1081-1099, November.
  11. Charles Engel & John H. Rogers, 1995. "How wide is the border?," International Finance Discussion Papers 498, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  12. Charles Engel & John H. Rogers, 1999. "Deviations from Purchasing Power Parity:Causes and Welfare Costs," Discussion Papers in Economics at the University of Washington 0038, Department of Economics at the University of Washington.
  13. Yin-Wong Cheung & Menzie D. Chinn & Eiji Fujii, 1999. "Market Structure and the Persistence of Sectoral Real Exchange Rates," NBER Working Papers 7408, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  14. David C. Parsley & Shang-Jin Wei, 2000. "Explaining the Border Effect: The Role of Exchange Rate Variability, Shipping Costs, and Geography," NBER Working Papers 7836, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  15. Kenneth A. Froot & Paul Klemperer, 1988. "Exchange Rate Pass-Through When Market Share Matters," NBER Working Papers 2542, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  16. Depken, Craig II & Sonora, Robert J., 2002. "International price volatility: Evidence from U.S. and Mexican cities," The North American Journal of Economics and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 13(2), pages 179-193, August.
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