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Expectations and Contagion in Self-Fulfilling Currency Attacks

  • Tood Keister


    (Centro de Investigacion Economica (CIE), Instituto Tecnologico Autonomo de Mexico (ITAM))

This paper shows how expectations-driven contagion of currency crises can arise even if the currency market has a unique equilibrium when viewed in isolation. The model of Morris and Shin (1998) is extended to allow speculators to trade in a second currency market. If speculators believe that a devaluation of this other currency will make a domestic devaluation more likely, they will engage in trades that link the two markets. A sharp devaluation of the other currency will then be propagated to the domestic market and will increase the likelihood of a crisis there, fulfilling the original expectations. Even though this contagion is driven solely by expectations, the model places restrictions on observable variables, and these restrictions are broadly consistent with existing empirical evidence.

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Paper provided by Centro de Investigacion Economica, ITAM in its series Working Papers with number 0501.

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Length: 22 pages
Date of creation: Apr 2005
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:cie:wpaper:0501
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  1. Guimaraes, Bernardo & Morris, Stephen, 2007. "Risk and wealth in a model of self-fulfilling currency attacks," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 54(8), pages 2205-2230, November.
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  7. Morris, S & Song Shin, H, 1996. "Unique Equilibrium in a Model of Self-Fulfilling Currency Attacks," Economics Papers 126, Economics Group, Nuffield College, University of Oxford.
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  12. Heinemann, Frank & Illing, Gerhard, 2002. "Speculative attacks: Unique equilibrium and transparency," Munich Reprints in Economics 19430, University of Munich, Department of Economics.
  13. Paul Masson, 1999. "Multiple equilibria, contagion, and the emerging market crises," Proceedings, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, issue Sep.
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  24. Spear, Stephen E, 1989. "Are Sunspots Necessary?," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 97(4), pages 965-73, August.
  25. Eichengreen, Barry & Rose, Andrew & Wyplosz, Charles, 1996. " Contagious Currency Crises: First Tests," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 98(4), pages 463-84, December.
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  28. Ennis, Huberto M. & Keister, Todd, 2005. "Optimal fiscal policy under multiple equilibria," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 52(8), pages 1359-1377, November.
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