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The Global Capital Market: Benefactor or Menace?

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  • Obstfeld, Maurice

Abstract

This paper reviews the theoretical functions, history, and policy problems raised by the international capital market. The goal is to offer a perspective on both the considerable advantages the market offers and on the genuine hazards it poses, as well as on the avenues through which it constrains national policy choices. A duality of benefits and risks is inescapable in the real world of asymmetric information and imperfect contract enforcement. I argue, however, that in confronting the global capital market there is no reason to depart from conventional economic wisdom. The way to maximize net benefits is to encourage economic integration while attacking concomitant distortions and other unwanted side-effects at, or close to, their sources.

Suggested Citation

  • Obstfeld, Maurice, 1998. "The Global Capital Market: Benefactor or Menace?," Department of Economics, Working Paper Series qt3kn3n2s8, Department of Economics, Institute for Business and Economic Research, UC Berkeley.
  • Handle: RePEc:cdl:econwp:qt3kn3n2s8
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    international capital market; financial crises; exchange-rate crises; policy autonomy; globalization; economics;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • F31 - International Economics - - International Finance - - - Foreign Exchange
    • F41 - International Economics - - Macroeconomic Aspects of International Trade and Finance - - - Open Economy Macroeconomics

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