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Working Paper 157 - How are the US Financial Shocks Transmitted into South Africa? Structural VAR Evidence

  • Mthuli Ncube


  • Eliphas Ndou
  • Nombulelo Gumata

We investigate the impact of unanticipated United States (US) bond yield increases, federal funds rate tightening, and monetary stimulus shocks on the South African economy using structural VAR models. Firstly, the US monetary stimulus shock leads to weak consumer price inflation, rand-dollar appreciation, real stock price revaluation, bond yield declines, decline in monetary aggregates and real interest rates in South Africa. Despite the weak trade channel evidence, other findings are consistent with predictions of a small open economy Mundell-Fleming model. Secondly, an unanticipated positive US medium-term bond yield shock leads to rand-dollar depreciation and rising bond yields as predicted by the portfolio balance exchange rate model. This same shock leads to significant real stock price declines, which is consistent with portfolio re-allocation driven by change in US bonds yields. Thirdly, we find that unanticipated US federal funds rate tightening leads to significant increases in South African bond yields, rand-dollar depreciation and delayed consumer price inflation

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Paper provided by African Development Bank in its series Working Paper Series with number 410.

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Date of creation: 08 Oct 2012
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:adb:adbwps:410
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  1. Kwark, Noh-Sun, 1999. "Sources of international business fluctuations: Country-specific shocks or worldwide shocks?," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 48(2), pages 367-385, August.
  2. Park, Kwangwoo & Ratti, Ronald A, 2000. "Real Activity, Inflation, Stock Returns, and Monetary Policy," The Financial Review, Eastern Finance Association, vol. 35(2), pages 59-77, May.
  3. Ben S. Bernanke & Kenneth N. Kuttner, 2003. "What explains the stock market's reaction to Federal Reserve policy?," Staff Reports 174, Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
  4. James M. Poterba, 2000. "Stock Market Wealth and Consumption," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 14(2), pages 99-118, Spring.
  5. Friedman, Milton, 1977. "Nobel Lecture: Inflation and Unemployment," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 85(3), pages 451-72, June.
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