Exogenous Shocks and Exchange Rate Management in Developing Countries
Even though globalization benefits less developed countries (LDCs), it also makes them more vulnerable to the exogenous shocks to the economies. Many LDCs rely on imported technologies and intermediate inputs to compete in the international export markets with better quality and cost efficient products. In this regard, exchange rate policies in respective countries have a direct bearing on the cost of production. This paper examines alternative exchange rate regimes to suggest an appropriate exchange rate policy in the context of developing countries. The paper utilizes a small open economy model involving direct supply-side effects of exchange rate and expectations of key economic variables and considers four possible exchange rate policies, e.g., fixed exchange rate, perfectly flexible exchange rate, leaning against the wind, and leaning with the wind. Contrary to the conventional wisdom, the paper finds that in the event of a shock, leaning against the wind is likely to be the most appropriate exchange rate policy. Moreover, in the event of rigid wages, a fixed exchange rate policy is advisable.
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