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International financial flows, real exchange rates and cross-border insurance

Author

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  • Francesca Viani

    () (Banco de España)

Abstract

Whether cross-border financial market integration has raised global insurance, is still a controversial issue in the literature. If this is so, what should we observe in the data? The insurance literature emphasizes that efficient risk-sharing requires financial markets to channel resources to countries that have been made temporarily poorer by some negative conjuncture, net of physical capital accumulation. This standard condition, which provides the basis for virtually every test of international insurance, is however derived focusing on only one of the two channels of cross-border insurance, the financial flows channel, implicitly assuming no interaction between this and the other channel, international relative price fluctuations. This paper shows that testable conditions can only be derived theoretically placing the interaction between prices and financial flows centerstage in the analysis. Using a two-country general equilibrium model with endogenous portfolio diversification, I show that financial flows and relative prices can be either complements or substitutes in providing insurance. In the case of complementarity, financial inflows raise the international price of a country's output. This implies the standard condition. In the case of substitutability prices and flows transfer purchasing power in opposite directions. This implies a different condition: efficient financial markets are required to channel resources "upstream", from relatively poorer to relatively richer countries. The conditions for substitutability appear to be quantitatively and empirically plausible.

Suggested Citation

  • Francesca Viani, 2011. "International financial flows, real exchange rates and cross-border insurance," Working Papers 1038, Banco de España;Working Papers Homepage.
  • Handle: RePEc:bde:wpaper:1038
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    File URL: http://www.bde.es/f/webbde/SES/Secciones/Publicaciones/PublicacionesSeriadas/DocumentosTrabajo/10/Fic/dt1038e.pdf
    File Function: First version, January 2011
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Javier Andrés & Óscar Arce & Carlos Thomas, 2013. "Banking Competition, Collateral Constraints, and Optimal Monetary Policy," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 45(s2), pages 87-125, December.
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    Cited by:

    1. Mykhaylova Olena & Staveley-O’Carroll James, 2014. "International transmission of productivity shocks with nonzero net foreign debt," The B.E. Journal of Macroeconomics, De Gruyter, vol. 14(1), pages 1-46, January.
    2. Khalil, Makram, 2016. "Cross-Border Portfolio Diversification under Trade Linkages," Annual Conference 2016 (Augsburg): Demographic Change 145811, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
    3. Atanas Christev & Jacques Melitz, 2013. "EMU, EU, Market Integration and Consumption Smoothing," Open Economies Review, Springer, vol. 24(5), pages 789-818, November.
    4. Rabitsch, Katrin & Stepanchuk, Serhiy & Tsyrennikov, Viktor, 2015. "International portfolios: A comparison of solution methods," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 97(2), pages 404-422.
    5. Heathcote, Jonathan & Perri, Fabrizio, 2014. "Assessing International Efficiency," Handbook of International Economics, Elsevier.
    6. James Staveley-O'Carroll & Olena M. Staveley-O'Carroll, 2016. "Exchange Rate Targeting in the Presence of Foreign Debt Obligations," Working Papers 1604, College of the Holy Cross, Department of Economics.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    International financial flows; risk-sharing; terms of trade;

    JEL classification:

    • F3 - International Economics - - International Finance
    • F4 - International Economics - - Macroeconomic Aspects of International Trade and Finance
    • G1 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets

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