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A Simple Test of Momentum in Foreign Exchange Markets

  • Andres Felipe Garcia-Suaza


  • Jose Eduardo Gómez


This study proposes a new method for testing for the presence of momentum in nominal exchange rates, using a probabilistic approach. We illustrate our methodology estimating a binary response model using information on local currency / US dollar exchange rates of eight emerging economies. After controlling for important variables affecting the behavior of exchange rates in the short-run, we show evidence of exchange rate inertia; in other words, we find that exchange rate momentum is a common feature in this group of emerging economies, and thus foreign exchange traders participating in these markets are able to make excess returns by following technical analysis strategies. We find that the presence of momentum is asymmetric, being stronger in moments of currency depreciation than of appreciation. This behavior may be associated with central bank intervention.

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Paper provided by BANCO DE LA REPÚBLICA in its series BORRADORES DE ECONOMIA with number 008230.

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Length: 20
Date of creation: 28 Mar 2011
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Handle: RePEc:col:000094:008230
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  1. Juan José Echavarría & Diego Vásquez & Mauricio Villamizar, 2010. "Impacto de las intervenciones cambiarias sobre el nivel y la volatilidad de la tasa de cambio en Colombia," ENSAYOS SOBRE POLÍTICA ECONÓMICA, BANCO DE LA REPÚBLICA - ESPE, May.
  2. Michel Beine & Jérôme Lahaye & Sébastien Laurent & Christopher J. Neely & Franz C. Palm, 2007. "Central bank intervention and exchange rate volatility, its continuous and jump components," Working Papers 2006-031, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis.
  3. Pontines, Victor & Rajan, Ramkishen S., 2011. "Foreign exchange market intervention and reserve accumulation in emerging Asia: Is there evidence of fear of appreciation?," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 111(3), pages 252-255, June.
  4. Hakan Kara & Fethi Öğünç, 2008. "Inflation Targeting and Exchange Rate Pass-Through: The Turkish Experience," Emerging Markets Finance and Trade, M.E. Sharpe, Inc., vol. 44(6), pages 52-66, November.
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  6. Martin Evans, 2008. "Order Flows and The Exchange Rate Disconnect Puzzle," Working Papers gueconwpa~08-08-05, Georgetown University, Department of Economics.
  7. Tigran Poghosyan & Evžen Kočenda & Petr Zemčik, 2008. "Modeling Foreign Exchange Risk Premium in Armenia," Emerging Markets Finance and Trade, M.E. Sharpe, Inc., vol. 44(1), pages 41-61, January.
  8. Fama, Eugene F. & French, Kenneth R., 1988. "Dividend yields and expected stock returns," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 22(1), pages 3-25, October.
  9. Michael Sager & Mark P. Taylor, 2008. "Commercially Available Order Flow Data and Exchange Rate Movements: "Caveat Emptor"," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 40(4), pages 583-625, 06.
  10. Domac, Ilker & Mendoza, Alfonso, 2004. "Is there room for foreign exchange interventions under an inflation targeting framework ? Evidence from Mexico and Turkey," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3288, The World Bank.
  11. Reinhart, Carmen & Rogoff, Kenneth, 2004. "The modern history of exchange rate arrangements: A reinterpretation," MPRA Paper 14070, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  12. Taylor, Mark P. & Allen, Helen, 1992. "The use of technical analysis in the foreign exchange market," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 11(3), pages 304-314, June.
  13. Martin Evans and Richard K. Lyons, 2002. "Informational Integration and FX Trading," Working Papers gueconwpa~02-02-11, Georgetown University, Department of Economics.
  14. Blake LeBaron, 1996. "Technical Trading Rule Profitability and Foreign Exchange Intervention," NBER Working Papers 5505, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  15. Balvers, Ronald J. & Wu, Yangru, 2006. "Momentum and mean reversion across national equity markets," Journal of Empirical Finance, Elsevier, vol. 13(1), pages 24-48, January.
  16. Rime, Dagfinn & Sarno, Lucio & Sojli, Elvira, 2009. "Exchange Rate Forecasting, Order Flow and Macroeconomic Information," CEPR Discussion Papers 7225, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  17. Okunev, John & White, Derek, 2003. "Do Momentum-Based Strategies Still Work in Foreign Currency Markets?," Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis, Cambridge University Press, vol. 38(02), pages 425-447, June.
  18. Narasimhan Jegadeesh, 2001. "Profitability of Momentum Strategies: An Evaluation of Alternative Explanations," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 56(2), pages 699-720, 04.
  19. Luis Muga & Rafael Santamaría, 2007. "The Momentum Effect in Latin American Emerging Markets," Emerging Markets Finance and Trade, M.E. Sharpe, Inc., vol. 43(4), pages 24-45, August.
  20. Gómez-González, José Eduardo & Hinojosa, Inés Paola Orozco, 2010. "Estimation of conditional time-homogeneous credit quality transition matrices," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 27(1), pages 89-96, January.
  21. Christopher J. Neely & Paul A. Weller, 2011. "Technical analysis in the foreign exchange market," Working Papers 2011-001, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis.
  22. Burton G. Malkiel, 2003. "The Efficient Market Hypothesis and Its Critics," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 17(1), pages 59-82, Winter.
  23. Chiang, Thomas C. & Jiang, Christine X., 1995. "Foreign exchange returns over short and long horizons," International Review of Economics & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 4(3), pages 267-282.
  24. Matías Tapia & Andrea Tokman, 2004. "Effects of Foreign Exchange Intervention Under Public Information: the Chilean Case," Working Papers Central Bank of Chile 255, Central Bank of Chile.
  25. Levich, Richard M, 1989. "Is the Foreign Exchange Market Efficient?," Oxford Review of Economic Policy, Oxford University Press, vol. 5(3), pages 40-60, Autumn.
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