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Currency Boards in Retrospect and Prospect


  • Holger C. Wolf

    () (Georgetown University)

  • Atish R. Ghosh

    () (International Monetary Fund)

  • Helge Berger

    () (Free University Berlin)

  • Anne-Marie Gulde

    (International Monetary Fund)


Currency boards, more so than other exchange rate regimes, have come in and out of fashion. Defined by a fixed exchange rate with full convertibility, central bank liabilities backed with foreign exchange reserves, and a high cost of exiting the regime, currency boards were common in colonial times--until most were cast off as countries gained independence after World War II. In the 1990s, currency boards enjoyed a revival as the cornerstone of various macroeconomic stabilization programs--including many in central and eastern European transition economies--only to fall into disfavor again with the collapse of the Argentine regime in 2002. The authors of Currency Boards in Retrospect and Prospect take a balanced look at the effects of currency board regimes on inflation, output growth, and macroeconomic performance more generally. Drawing on historical experience, economic theory, cross-country empirical analysis, and case studies of currency boards in Argentina, Estonia, Lithuania, Bulgaria, and Bosnia and Herzegovina, the authors conclude that currency boards deliver significant reductions in inflation compared to other regimes and do not seem to result in slower growth or a markedly higher vulnerability to crisis.

Suggested Citation

  • Holger C. Wolf & Atish R. Ghosh & Helge Berger & Anne-Marie Gulde, 2008. "Currency Boards in Retrospect and Prospect," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262232650, January.
  • Handle: RePEc:mtp:titles:0262232650

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    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.

    Cited by:

    1. Laaser, Claus-Friedrich & Reiljan, Janno & Schrader, Klaus, 2015. "Some empirical findings on the structural development of the Estonian economy," Kiel Working Papers 1998, Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW).
    2. Cobham, David, 2018. "A comprehensive classification of monetary policy frameworks for advanced and emerging economies," MPRA Paper 84737, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    3. Ismeal Mahamoud & Houmed Mohamed & Jean-François Ponsot, 2014. "Gouvernance, éthique du policy maker et dynamiques macroéconomiques en régime de Currency Board : le cas de Djibouti," Post-Print halshs-01284797, HAL.
    4. Bernd Hayo & Matthias Neuenkirch, 2013. "Does the currency board matter? US news and Argentine financial market reaction," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 45(28), pages 4034-4040, October.
    5. Schrader, Klaus & Laaser, Claus-Friedrich & Reiljan, Janno, 2014. "Deficiencies in the development of an Estonian welfare state," Kiel Working Papers 1944, Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW).
    6. Emil Kalchev, 2015. "The Currency Board In Bulgaria – Staus Quo And Perspectives," Economy & Business Journal, International Scientific Publications, Bulgaria, vol. 9(1), pages 554-562.
    7. Singleton,John, 2010. "Central Banking in the Twentieth Century," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521899093, May.
    8. Gedeon Shirley, 2010. "The Political Economy of Currency Boards: Case of Bosnia and Herzegovina," South East European Journal of Economics and Business, De Gruyter Open, vol. 5(2), pages 7-20, November.
    9. Holger Wolf, 2016. "Currency boards as a path towards the Eurozone: lessons from the Baltics," International Economics and Economic Policy, Springer, vol. 13(1), pages 45-57, January.
    10. Janno Reiljan & Claus-Friedrich Laaser & Klaus Schrader, 2014. "Structural Weaknesses As Barriers To Social Progress In Estonia," University of Tartu - Faculty of Economics and Business Administration Working Paper Series 96, Faculty of Economics and Business Administration, University of Tartu (Estonia).
    11. Berger, Helge & Nitsch, Volker, 2014. "Wearing corset, losing shape: The euro's effect on trade imbalances," Journal of Policy Modeling, Elsevier, vol. 36(1), pages 136-155.

    More about this item


    currency boards; exchange rate regimes;

    JEL classification:

    • F31 - International Economics - - International Finance - - - Foreign Exchange


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