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Trilemma Policy Convergence Patterns and Output Volatility

  • Aizenman, Joshua
  • Ito, Hiro

We examine the open macroeconomic policy choices of developing economies from the perspectiveof the economic “trilemma†hypothesis. We construct an index of divergence of the threetrilemma policy choices, and evaluate its patterns in recent decades. We find that the threedimensions of the trilemma configurations are converging towards a “middle ground†amongemerging market economies -- managed exchange rate flexibility underpinned by sizable holdingsof international reserves, intermediate levels of monetary independence, and controlled financialintegration. Emerging market economies with more converged policy choices tend to experiencesmaller output volatility in the last two decades. Emerging markets with relatively low internationalreserves/GDP could experience higher levels of output volatility when they choose a policycombination with a greater degree of policy divergence. Yet this heightened output volatility effectdoes not apply to economies with relatively high international reserves/GDP holding.

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Paper provided by Department of Economics, UC Santa Cruz in its series Santa Cruz Department of Economics, Working Paper Series with number qt5vb313vr.

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Date of creation: 22 Jan 2012
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Handle: RePEc:cdl:ucscec:qt5vb313vr
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  14. Aizenman, Joshua, 2011. "The Impossible Trinity – from the Policy Trilemma to the Policy Quadrilemma," Santa Cruz Department of Economics, Working Paper Series qt8cq7g4c9, Department of Economics, UC Santa Cruz.
  15. Helen Popper & Alex Mandilaras & Graham Bird, 2011. "Trilemma Stability and International Macroeconomic Archetypes in Developing Economies," School of Economics Discussion Papers 0311, School of Economics, University of Surrey.
  16. Chinn, Menzie David & Ito, Hiro, 2005. "What Matters for Financial Development? Capital Controls, Institutions, and Interactions," Santa Cruz Center for International Economics, Working Paper Series qt5pv1j341, Center for International Economics, UC Santa Cruz.
  17. Popper, Helen & Mandilaras, Alex & Bird, Graham, 2013. "Trilemma stability and international macroeconomic archetypes," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 64(C), pages 181-193.
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  21. Aizenman, Joshua & Chinn, Menzie David & Ito, Hiro, 2009. "Assessing the Emerging Global Financial Architecture: Measuring the Trilemma's Configurations over Time," Santa Cruz Department of Economics, Working Paper Series qt840728sc, Department of Economics, UC Santa Cruz.
  22. Maurice Obstfeld & Jay C. Shambaugh & Alan M. Taylor, 2009. "Financial Instability, Reserves, and Central Bank Swap Lines in the Panic of 2008," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 99(2), pages 480-86, May.
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  27. Barry Eichengreen & David Leblang, 2003. "Exchange Rates and Cohesion: Historical Perspectives and Political-Economy Considerations," Journal of Common Market Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 41(5), pages 797-822, December.
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