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On the Rand: Determinants of the South African Exchange Rate

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  • Jeffrey Frankel

Abstract

This paper is an econometric investigation of the determinants of the real value of the South African rand over the period 1984-2006. The results show a relatively good fit. As always with exchange rate equations, there is substantial weight on the lagged exchange rate, which can be attributed to a momentum component. Nevertheless, economic fundamentals are significant and important. This is especially true of an index of the real prices of South African mineral commodities, which even drives out real income as a significant determinant. An implication is that the 2003-2006 real appreciation of the rand can be attributed to Dutch Disease. In other respects, the rand behaves like currencies of industrialized countries with well-developed financial markets. In particular, high South African interest rates raise international demand for the rand and lead to real appreciation, once one also controls for a forward-looking measure of expected inflation and a measure of default risk or country risk. It is in the latter respects, in particular, that the paper purports to improve on earlier studies of the rand.

Suggested Citation

  • Jeffrey Frankel, 2007. "On the Rand: Determinants of the South African Exchange Rate," CID Working Papers 139, Center for International Development at Harvard University.
  • Handle: RePEc:cid:wpfacu:139
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Frankel, Jeffrey A & Froot, Kenneth A, 1987. "Using Survey Data to Test Standard Propositions Regarding Exchange Rate Expectations," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 77(1), pages 133-153, March.
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    5. Kauffman, Kyle & Weerapana, Akila, 2006. "The Impact of AIDS-Related News on Exchange Rates in South Africa," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 54(2), pages 349-368, January.
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    7. Dornbusch, Rudiger, 1976. "Expectations and Exchange Rate Dynamics," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 84(6), pages 1161-1176, December.
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    9. Goodhart, Charles, 1988. "The Foreign Exchange Market: A Random Walk with a Dragging Anchor," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 55(220), pages 437-460, November.
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    12. Mtonga, Elvis, 2006. "The real exchange rate of the rand and competitiveness of South Africa's trade," MPRA Paper 1192, University Library of Munich, Germany.
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    Cited by:

    1. Arezki, Rabah & Dumitrescu, Elena & Freytag, Andreas & Quintyn, Marc, 2014. "Commodity prices and exchange rate volatility: Lessons from South Africa's capital account liberalization," Emerging Markets Review, Elsevier, vol. 19(C), pages 96-105.
    2. Isaacs, Gilad, 2014. "The myth of “neutrality” and the rhetoric of “stability”: macroeconomic policy in democratic South Africa," MPRA Paper 54426, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    3. Frankel, Jeffrey, 2017. "How to Cope with Volatile Commodity Export Prices: Four Proposals," Working Paper Series rwp17-033, Harvard University, John F. Kennedy School of Government.
    4. Muteba Mwamba, John & Dube, Sandile, 2014. "The impact of exchange rate volatility on international trade between South Africa, China and USA: The case of the manufacturing sector," MPRA Paper 64389, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    5. Rodrigo Caputo & Mariel Siravegna, 2014. "RER Appreciation After the Great Recession: Misalignment or Fundamental Correction?," Working Papers Central Bank of Chile 718, Central Bank of Chile.
    6. Kebalo, Leleng, 2016. "South african exchange rate after 2000s: an econometric investigation," MPRA Paper 72440, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    7. Balazs Egert, 2012. "Nominal and Real Exchange Rate Models in South Africa: How Robust are they?," CESifo Working Paper Series 3853, CESifo Group Munich.
    8. Mehmet Balcilar & Rangan Gupta & Charl Jooste, 2014. "Is the Rand Really Decoupled from Economic Fundamentals?," Working Papers 201439, University of Pretoria, Department of Economics.
    9. Frankel, Jeffrey A., 2010. "The Natural Resource Curse: A Survey," Scholarly Articles 4454156, Harvard Kennedy School of Government.
    10. Léleng KEBALO, 2016. "What DCC-GARCH model tell us about the effect of the gold price’s volatility on south african exchange rate?," Journal of Economics Library, KSP Journals, vol. 3(4), pages 570-582, December.
    11. Chuku Chuku & Paul Middleditch, 2016. "Characterizing monetary and fiscal policy rules and interactions when commodity prices matter," Centre for Growth and Business Cycle Research Discussion Paper Series 222, Economics, The Univeristy of Manchester.
    12. Jeffrey Frankel & Ben Smit & Federico Sturzenegger, 2008. "South Africa: Macroeconomic challenges after a decade of success," The Economics of Transition, The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, vol. 16(4), pages 639-677, October.
    13. McKenzie, Rex & Pons-Vignon, Nicolas, 2012. "Volatile Capital Flows and a Route to Financial Crisis in South Africa," MPRA Paper 40119, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    14. Sean J. Gossel & Nicholas Biekpe, 2012. "The nominal rand/dollar exchange rate: before and after 1995," Studies in Economics and Finance, Emerald Group Publishing, vol. 29(2), pages 105-117, June.
    15. Rodrigo Caputo & Miguel Fuentes, 2012. "Government Spending and the Real Exchange Rate: a Cross - Country Perspective," Working Papers Central Bank of Chile 655, Central Bank of Chile.
    16. Frankel, Jeffrey A., 2012. "The Natural Resource Curse: A Survey of Diagnoses and Some Prescriptions," Scholarly Articles 8694932, Harvard Kennedy School of Government.
    17. repec:taf:oaefxx:v:4:y:2016:i:1:p:1151131 is not listed on IDEAS
    18. Rodrigo Caputo & Miguel Fuentes, 2013. "Real Exchange Rate Dynamics and Fiscal Policy from a Cross-Country Perspective," Central Banking, Analysis, and Economic Policies Book Series,in: Luis Felipe Céspedes & Jordi Galí (ed.), Fiscal Policy and Macroeconomic Performance, edition 1, volume 17, chapter 4, pages 93-116 Central Bank of Chile.
    19. Carlos Ibarra, 2011. "Monetary Policy and Real Currency Appreciation: A BEER Model for the Mexican Peso," International Economic Journal, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 25(1), pages 91-110.
    20. Martin Grandes & Marcel Peter & Nicolas Pinaud, 2010. "Pricing the Currency Premium Under Flexible Exchange Rates: Evidence from South Africa," Ensayos Económicos, Central Bank of Argentina, Economic Research Department, vol. 1(60), pages 7-52, October -.
    21. Rasaki, Mutiu Gbade & Malikane, Christopher, 2015. "Macroeconomic shocks and fluctuations in African economies," Economic Systems, Elsevier, vol. 39(4), pages 675-696.
    22. Leleng KEBALO, 2016. "South African Exchange Rate After 2000s: An Econometric Investigation," Journal of Economics Bibliography, KSP Journals, vol. 3(3), pages 459-481, September.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    South Africa; Rand; Commodity Currency; Dutch Disease; Mineral Prices; Country Risk;

    JEL classification:

    • F31 - International Economics - - International Finance - - - Foreign Exchange

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