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The Euro as an International Currency: Explaining Puzzling First Evidence

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  • Hau, Harald
  • Killeen, William
  • Moore, Michael J

Abstract

This paper presents evidence that the bid-ask spreads in euro rates increased relative to the corresponding bid-ask spreads in the German mark (DM) prior to the currency union. This comes with a decrease in transaction volume in the euro rates relative to the previous DM rates. The starkest example is the DM(euro)/yen rate in which the spread has risen by almost two-thirds while the volume has almost halved. We propose a microstructure theory for a system of multiple exchange rates in which spreads are endogenously determined. It is argued that the elimination of cross rates due to the introduction of the euro reduced the intra-temporal risk sharing capacity of the multicurrency dealership market. A second explanation for the increase in the euro bid-ask spreads and the relative euro volume loss is based on an increase in the information content of order flow in euro rates relative to previous DM rates.

Suggested Citation

  • Hau, Harald & Killeen, William & Moore, Michael J, 2000. "The Euro as an International Currency: Explaining Puzzling First Evidence," CEPR Discussion Papers 2510, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  • Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:2510
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Charles Goodhart & Ryan Love & Richard Payne & Dagfinn Rime, 2002. "Analysis of spreads in the dollar/euro and deutschemark/dollar foreign exchange markets," Economic Policy, CEPR;CES;MSH, vol. 17(35), pages 535-552, October.
    2. Gabriele Galati & Kostas Tsatsaronis, 2001. "The impact of the euro on Europe's financial markets," BIS Working Papers 100, Bank for International Settlements.
    3. Jorge I Canales Kriljenko, 2004. "Foreign Exchange Market Organization in Selected Developing and Transition Economies; Evidence from a Survey," IMF Working Papers 04/4, International Monetary Fund.
    4. Papaioannou, Elias & Portes, Richard & Siourounis, Gregorios, 2006. "Optimal currency shares in international reserves: The impact of the euro and the prospects for the dollar," Journal of the Japanese and International Economies, Elsevier, vol. 20(4), pages 508-547, December.
    5. Fischer, Andreas M., 2002. "Fluctuations in the Swiss Franc: What Has Changed Since the Euro's Introduction?," Journal of Public Policy, Cambridge University Press, vol. 22(02), pages 143-159, September.
    6. Killeen, William P. & Lyons, Richard K. & Moore, Michael J., 2006. "Fixed versus flexible: Lessons from EMS order flow," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 25(4), pages 551-579, June.
    7. Kaul, Aditya & Sapp, Stephen, 2006. "Y2K fears and safe haven trading of the U.S. dollar," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 25(5), pages 760-779, August.
    8. Heimonen, Kari, 2001. "Substituting a substitute currency : The case of Estonia," BOFIT Discussion Papers 11/2001, Bank of Finland, Institute for Economies in Transition.
    9. Richard Portes, 2002. "The Euro and the International Financial System," Chapters,in: EMU and Economic Policy in Europe, chapter 13 Edward Elgar Publishing.
    10. McGroarty, Frank & ap Gwilym, Owain & Thomas, Stephen, 2006. "Microstructure effects, bid-ask spreads and volatility in the spot foreign exchange market pre and post-EMU," Global Finance Journal, Elsevier, vol. 17(1), pages 23-49, September.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Microstructure; Spreads; Transaction Costs; Vehicle Currency;

    JEL classification:

    • F33 - International Economics - - International Finance - - - International Monetary Arrangements and Institutions
    • G15 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - International Financial Markets

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