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Dollarization, Bailouts, And The Stability Of The Banking System

  • Douglas Gale
  • Xavier Vives

Central bank policy suffers from time inconsistency when facing a banking crisis: a bailout is optimal ex post, but ex ante it should be limited to control moral hazard. Dollarization provides a credible commitment not to help at the cost of not helping even when it would be ex ante optimal to do so. Dollarization is good when the costs of establishing a reputation for the central bank are high, monitoring effort by the banker is important in improving returns, and when the cost of liquidating projects is moderate. However, a very severe moral hazard problem could make dollarization undesirable. The results obtained are applied to assess the desirability of dollarization in a range of countries and the potential role of the IMF as International LOLR. We would never put ourselves in a position where we envisioned actions that we would take would be of assistance to the rest of the world but to the detriment of the United States. Alan Greenspan to a congressional panel in 1999 [IHT, January 19, 2000]. © 2001 the President and Fellows of Harvard College and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology

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Article provided by MIT Press in its journal The Quarterly Journal of Economics.

Volume (Year): 117 (2002)
Issue (Month): 2 (May)
Pages: 467-502

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Handle: RePEc:tpr:qjecon:v:117:y:2002:i:2:p:467-502
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