IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Hitting and Hoping? Meeting the Exchange Rate and Inflation Criteria during a Period of Nominal Convergence


  • John Lewis


This paper analyses the problem faced by CEECs wishing to join the Euro who must hit both an inflation and exchange rate criterion during a period of nominal convergence. This process requires either an inflation differential, an appreciating nominal exchange rate, or a combination of the two, which makes it difficult to simultaneously satisfy the exchange rate and inflation criteria. The authorities can use their monetary policy to hit one criterion, but must essentially just "hope" to satisfy the other one. The paper quantifies the likely size and speed of these convergence effects, their impact on inflation and exchange rates, and their consequences for the simultaneous compliance with both criteria under an inflation targeting setup and under a fixed exchange rate regime. The key result is that under an inflation targeting regime, the nominal appreciation implied by convergence is not big enough to threaten a breach of the exchange rate criterion, but for countries with fixed exchange rates, inflation is likely to exceed the reference value. This result is robust to plausible changes in the assumed convergence scenario.

Suggested Citation

  • John Lewis, 2007. "Hitting and Hoping? Meeting the Exchange Rate and Inflation Criteria during a Period of Nominal Convergence," CESifo Working Paper Series 1902, CESifo Group Munich.
  • Handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_1902

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Ernst Fehr & Simon Gächter, 2000. "Fairness and Retaliation: The Economics of Reciprocity," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 14(3), pages 159-181, Summer.
    2. Fabio M. Natalucci & Federico Ravenna, 2002. "The road to adopting the euro: monetary policy and exchange rate regimes in EU candidate countries," International Finance Discussion Papers 741, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
    3. Cooter, Robert, 1998. "Expressive Law and Economics," The Journal of Legal Studies, University of Chicago Press, vol. 27(2), pages 585-608, June.
    4. Gary S. Becker, 1974. "Crime and Punishment: An Economic Approach," NBER Chapters,in: Essays in the Economics of Crime and Punishment, pages 1-54 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    5. László Halpern & Charles Wyplosz, 1997. "Equilibrium Exchange Rates in Transition Economies," IMF Staff Papers, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 44(4), pages 430-461, December.
    6. Ekkehart Schlicht, 2004. "Social Evolution, Corporate Culture, and Exploitation," Journal of Institutional and Theoretical Economics (JITE), Mohr Siebeck, Tübingen, vol. 160(2), pages 232-232, June.
    7. Martin Wagner & Jaroslava Hlouskova, 2005. "CEEC growth projections: Certainly necessary and necessarily uncertain," The Economics of Transition, The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, vol. 13(2), pages 341-372, April.
    8. Rasmus Kattai, 2007. "Constants do not stay constant because variables are varying," Bank of Estonia Working Papers 2007-01, Bank of Estonia, revised 02 Jan 2007.
    9. Balázs Égert & László Halpern & Ronald MacDonald, 2006. "Equilibrium Exchange Rates in Transition Economies: Taking Stock of the Issues ," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 20(2), pages 257-324, April.
    10. Frank A.G. den Butter & Robert H.J. Mosch, 2003. "The Dutch Miracle: Institutions, Networks, and Trust," Journal of Institutional and Theoretical Economics (JITE), Mohr Siebeck, Tübingen, vol. 159(2), pages 362-362, June.
    11. Elinor Ostrom, 2000. "Collective Action and the Evolution of Social Norms," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 14(3), pages 137-158, Summer.
    12. Hughes Hallett, Andrew & Lewis, John, 2007. "Debt, deficits, and the accession of the new member States to the Euro," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 23(2), pages 316-337, June.
    13. Egert, Balazs & Drine, Imed & Lommatzsch, Kirsten & Rault, Christophe, 2003. "The Balassa-Samuelson effect in Central and Eastern Europe: myth or reality?," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 31(3), pages 552-572, September.
    14. Cooter, Robert, 1998. "Expressive Law and Economics," Berkeley Olin Program in Law & Economics, Working Paper Series qt3w34j60j, Berkeley Olin Program in Law & Economics.
    15. György Szapáry, 2000. "Maastricht and the Choice of Exchange Rate Regime in Transition Countries During The Run-Up to EMU," MNB Working Papers 2000/7, Magyar Nemzeti Bank (Central Bank of Hungary).
    16. Ernst Fehr & Urs Fischbacher, 2004. "Social norms and human cooperation," Macroeconomics 0409026, EconWPA.
    17. Robert Cooter, 1998. "Expressive Law and Economics," CESifo Working Paper Series 161, CESifo Group Munich.
    18. George A. Akerlof, 1980. "A Theory of Social Custom, of which Unemployment may be One Consequence," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 94(4), pages 749-775.
    19. Peter B. Kenen & Ellen E. Meade, 2003. "EU Accession and the Euro: Close Together or Far Apart?," Policy Briefs PB03-09, Peterson Institute for International Economics.
    20. Frey, Bruno S & Jegen, Reto, 2001. " Motivation Crowding Theory," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 15(5), pages 589-611, December.
    21. Dubravko Mihaljek & Marc Klau, 2004. "The Balassa–Samuelson Effect in Central Europe: A Disaggregated Analysis1," Comparative Economic Studies, Palgrave Macmillan;Association for Comparative Economic Studies, vol. 46(1), pages 63-94, March.
    22. Elster, Jon, 1989. "Social Norms and Economic Theory," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 3(4), pages 99-117, Fall.
    23. Ellickson, Robert C, 1998. "Law and Economics Discovers Social Norms," The Journal of Legal Studies, University of Chicago Press, vol. 27(2), pages 537-552, June.
    24. Rasmus Kattai, 2005. "EMMA - A Quarterly Model of the Estonian Economy," Bank of Estonia Working Papers 2005-12, Bank of Estonia, revised 12 Dec 2005.
    25. Paul Grauwe & Gunther Schnabl, 2005. "Nominal Versus Real Convergence - EMU Entry Scenarios for the New Member States," Kyklos, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 58(4), pages 537-555, November.
    26. Jiri Jonas & Frederic S. Mishkin, 2003. "Inflation Targeting in Transition Countries: Experience and Prospects," NBER Working Papers 9667, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)


    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.

    Cited by:

    1. John Lewis & Karsten Staehr, 2010. "The Maastricht Inflation Criterion: What is the Effect of European Union Enlargement?," Journal of Common Market Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 48, pages 687-708, June.
    2. Vlastimir Vukovic & Aleksandar Zdravkovic, 2011. "The Inflation and Exchange Rate in the Five Balkan Countries from Maastricht Convergence Criteria Prospect," Book Chapters, Institute of Economic Sciences.
    3. Zsolt Darvas & György Szapáry, 2008. "Euro Area Enlargement and Euro Adoption Strategies," European Economy - Economic Papers 2008 - 2015 304, Directorate General Economic and Financial Affairs (DG ECFIN), European Commission.
    4. Hiranya Nath & Kiril Tochkov, 2013. "Relative inflation dynamics in the new EU member countries of Central and Eastern Europe," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 45(1), pages 1-22, August.
    5. Václav Žďárek, 2009. "Challenges for the new EU member states on the road to the Eurozone," International Economics and Economic Policy, Springer, vol. 6(2), pages 157-177, July.
    6. Agnès Bénassy-Quéré & Edouard Turkisch, 2009. "The ECB Governing Council in an Enlarged Euro Area," Journal of Common Market Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 47, pages 25-53, January.
    7. John Lewis, 2011. "How has the Financial Crisis Affected the Eurozone Accession Outlook in Central and Eastern Europe?," Chapters,in: The Economic Crisis and European Integration, chapter 11 Edward Elgar Publishing.
    8. Kadow, Alexander & Cerrato, Mario & MacDonald, Ronald & Straetmans, Stefan, 2013. "Does the euro dominate Central and Eastern European money markets?," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 32(C), pages 700-718.
    9. Juan Carlos Cuestas & Luis A. Gil-Alana & Karl Taylor, 2016. "Inflation convergence in Central and Eastern Europe vs. the Eurozone: Non-linearities and long memory," Scottish Journal of Political Economy, Scottish Economic Society, vol. 63(5), pages 519-538, November.
    10. John Lewis & Karsten Staehr, 2007. "The Maastricht Inflation Criterion: What is the Effect of Expansion of the European Union?," DNB Working Papers 151, Netherlands Central Bank, Research Department.
    11. TRIANDAFIL, Cristina Maria, 2013. "Sustainability of convergence in the context of macro-prudential policies in the European Union," Working Papers of National Institute of Economic Research 130618, National Institute of Economic Research.
    12. Karsten Staehr, 2010. "Income convergence and inflation in Central and Eastern Europe : does the sun always rise in the East," Bank of Estonia Working Papers wp2010-04, Bank of Estonia, revised 22 Mar 2010.

    More about this item


    Central and Eastern Europe; nominal convergence; Euro adoption;

    JEL classification:

    • E52 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit - - - Monetary Policy
    • E61 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook - - - Policy Objectives; Policy Designs and Consistency; Policy Coordination
    • E31 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - Price Level; Inflation; Deflation


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_1902. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Klaus Wohlrabe). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.