What Students of the Global Economy Should Know About Chinese Capital Flows: More Questions Than Answers
Many developing economies of the world today have been building up massive foreign exchange reserves of industrialized economies. A clear example of this is China. In February of 2005, China surpassed Japan as the world's largest holder of foreign exchange reserves. After the Asian Contagion period of the late 1990's, this buildup as a whole could be seen as a healthy development. But with an accumulation of over $1.4 trillion in 2007, questions have arisen if China's actual reserves are too large relative to "normal demand." The purpose of this paper is to briefly review both the macroeconomic aspects of China's reserve holdings, and to examine the treatment of the subject in contemporary international economics textbooks.This paper was presented May 22, 2008, at the 18th International Conference of the International Trade and Finance Association, meeting at Universidade Nova de Lisboa in Lisbon, Portugal.
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