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Foreign Exchange Interventions Under Inflation Targeting: The Czech Experience

  • Tomas Holub

This paper discusses the role of foreign exchange interventions in the inflation-targeting regime, focusing on the Czech experience since 1998. It proposes criteria for assessing whether the interventions are consistent with the inflation targeting. While the CNB's interventions in mid- 1998 and in 2002 pass these criteria easily, the judgement might be more uncertain concerning the interventions in early-1998 and in 1999/2000. It is also stressed that the literature on managed floating usually ignores the difficulty in defining clear procedural rules for the interventions. This contrasts with the procedures guiding the interest rate decisions under the inflation targeting regime, which may occasionally create tensions in the policy regime, as demonstrated by the Czech experience, too. The interventions' effectiveness in the Czech Republic is also discussed. It seems that sometimes they might have had an immediate impact lasting up to 2 or 3 months, but no strategy can be identified that would work in all episodes. Moreover, even many of the 'successful' interventions were not able to prevent quite prolonged periods of exchange rate overvaluation in 1998 and in 2002. It is concluded that the signalling role of foreign exchange interventions is more important than their 'market-equilibrating effect', implying a rather unstable transmission between the central bank actions and the market reactions. Finally, the paper analyses the sterilisation costs, which are shown to have been quite substantial in the Czech Republic. It is argued that the financial sustainability of the interventions is quite important for their credibility and effectiveness.

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Paper provided by Czech National Bank, Research Department in its series Research and Policy Notes with number 2004/01.

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Date of creation: Jan 2004
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Handle: RePEc:cnb:rpnrpn:2004/01
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  1. Priscilla Chiu, 2003. "Transparency versus constructive ambiguity in foreign exchange intervention," BIS Working Papers 144, Bank for International Settlements.
  2. Jonathan Kearns & Roberto Rigobon, 2002. "Identifying the Efficacy of Central Bank Interventions: The Australian Case," NBER Working Papers 9062, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Svensson, Lars E.O., 1998. "Inflation Targeting as a Monetary Policy Rule," Seminar Papers 646, Stockholm University, Institute for International Economic Studies.
  4. Jorge Iván Canales Kriljenko & Cem Karacadag & Roberto Pereira Guimarães, 2003. "Official Intervention in the Foreign Exchange Market; Elements of Best Practice," IMF Working Papers 03/152, International Monetary Fund.
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  8. Mark P. Taylor & Lucio Sarno, 2001. "Official Intervention in the Foreign Exchange Market: Is It Effective and, If So, How Does It Work?," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 39(3), pages 839-868, September.
  9. Edwin M. Truman, 2003. "Inflation Targeting in the World Economy," Peterson Institute Press: All Books, Peterson Institute for International Economics, number 346, December.
  10. Guillermo A. Calvo & Carmen M. Reinhart, 2002. "Fear Of Floating," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 117(2), pages 379-408, May.
  11. Katerina Smídková & Ales Bulir, 2005. "Exchange Rates in the New EU Accession Countries; What Have We Learned from the Forerunners?," IMF Working Papers 05/27, International Monetary Fund.
  12. Lyons, Richard K., 1997. "A simultaneous trade model of the foreign exchange hot potato," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 42(3-4), pages 275-298, May.
  13. Arminio Fraga & Ilan Goldfajn & André Minella, 2004. "Inflation Targeting in Emerging Market Economies," NBER Chapters, in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 2003, Volume 18, pages 365-416 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  14. Anna J. Schwartz, 2000. "The Rise and Fall of Foreign Exchange Market Intervention," NBER Working Papers 7751, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  15. Rogoff, Kenneth, 1984. "On the effects of sterilized intervention : An analysis of weekly data," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 14(2), pages 133-150, September.
  16. David Romer, 2000. "Keynesian Macroeconomics without the LM Curve," NBER Working Papers 7461, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  17. Marc Zelmer & Andrea Schaechter & Mark R. Stone & Alina Carare, 2002. "Establishing Initial Conditions in Support of Inflation Targeting," IMF Working Papers 02/102, International Monetary Fund.
  18. Stanley Fischer, 2001. "Exchange Rate Regimes: Is the Bipolar View Correct?," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 15(2), pages 3-24, Spring.
  19. Bofinger, Peter & Wollmershäuser, Timo, 2001. "Managed floating: Understanding the new international monetary order," W.E.P. - Würzburg Economic Papers 30, University of Würzburg, Chair for Monetary Policy and International Economics.
  20. Katerina Smidkova & Ray Barrell & Dawn Holland, 2002. "Estimates of Fundamental Real Exchange Rates for the Five EU Pre-Accession Countries," Working Papers 2002/03, Czech National Bank, Research Department.
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  22. Popper, Helen & Montgomery, John D., 2001. "Information sharing and central bank intervention in the foreign exchange market," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 55(2), pages 295-316, December.
  23. Dominguez, Kathryn M & Frankel, Jeffrey A, 1993. "Does Foreign-Exchange Intervention Matter? The Portfolio Effect," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 83(5), pages 1356-69, December.
  24. Kouri, Pentti J K, 1976. " The Exchange Rate and the Balance of Payments in the Short Run and in the Long Run: A Monetary Approach," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 78(2), pages 280-304.
  25. Ales Bulir, 2003. "Some Exchange Rates Are More Stable than Others: Short-Run Evidence from Transition Countries," Working Papers 2003/05, Czech National Bank, Research Department.
  26. Anna Schwartz, 2000. "The Rise and Fall of Foreign Exchange Market Intervention as a Policy Tool," Journal of Financial Services Research, Springer, vol. 18(2), pages 319-339, December.
  27. Martin Cihak & Tomas Holub, 2003. "Price Convergence to the EU: What Do the 1999 ICP Data Tell Us?," Working Papers 2003/02, Czech National Bank, Research Department.
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