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On the effectiveness of sterilized foreign exchange intervention


  • Fatum, Rasmus


This paper addresses the question of whether sterilized central bank intervention systematically affects exchange rates. Furthermore, the paper analyzes whether a central bank can conduct its intervention operations in a specific manner, in order to increase the likelihood of achieving its objectives. The first question is addressed by applying the event study methodology of the finance literature to daily data on Bundesbank and Fed post-Plaza intervention. Using the non-parametric sign test and the matched sample test, evidence of effectiveness in terms of a systematic association between exchange rate levels and intervention is found. The second question is addressed by estimating binary choice models of the conditional probabilities of observing a successful intervention operation over observations when at least one of the two central banks were intervening. The results suggest that central banks can in fact improve the likelihood of success primarily through co-ordination and, also, if intervention occurs infrequently. JEL Classification: F31, F33, F42, G15

Suggested Citation

  • Fatum, Rasmus, 2000. "On the effectiveness of sterilized foreign exchange intervention," Working Paper Series 0010, European Central Bank.
  • Handle: RePEc:ecb:ecbwps:20000010

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Catherine Bonser-Neal & Glenn Tanner, 1995. "Central bank intervention and the volatility of foreign exchange rates: evidence from the options market," Research Working Paper 95-04, Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City.
    2. Kaminsky, Graciela L. & Lewis, Karen K., 1996. "Does foreign exchange intervention signal future monetary policy?," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 37(2-3), pages 285-312, April.
    3. Maurice Obstfeld & Kenneth S. Rogoff, 1996. "Foundations of International Macroeconomics," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262150476, January.
    4. Campbell, Cynthia J. & Wesley, Charles E., 1993. "Measuring security price performance using daily NASDAQ returns," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 33(1), pages 73-92, February.
    5. A. Craig MacKinlay, 1997. "Event Studies in Economics and Finance," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 35(1), pages 13-39, March.
    6. Corrado, Charles J., 1989. "A nonparametric test for abnormal security-price performance in event studies," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 23(2), pages 385-395, August.
    7. Lewis, Karen K, 1995. "Are Foreign Exchange Intervention and Monetary Policy Related, and Does It Really Matter?," The Journal of Business, University of Chicago Press, vol. 68(2), pages 185-214, April.
    8. 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.
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    Cited by:

    1. Jorge I Canales Kriljenko, 2003. "Foreign Exchange Intervention in Developing and Transition Economies; Results of a Survey," IMF Working Papers 03/95, International Monetary Fund.
    2. Egert, Balazs, 2007. "Central bank interventions, communication and interest rate policy in emerging European economies," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 35(2), pages 387-413, June.
    3. Gnabo, Jean-Yves & Teiletche, Jérôme, 2009. "Foreign-exchange intervention strategies and market expectations: insights from Japan," Journal of International Financial Markets, Institutions and Money, Elsevier, vol. 19(3), pages 432-446, July.
    4. Ozge Akinci & Olcay Yucel Culha & Umit Ozlale & Gulbin Sahinbeyoglu, 2005. "Causes and Effectiveness of Foreign Exchange Interventions for the Turkish Economy," Working Papers 0505, Research and Monetary Policy Department, Central Bank of the Republic of Turkey.
    5. Rasmus Fatum & Michael Hutchison, 2002. "ECB Foreign Exchange Intervention and the EURO: Institutional Framework, News, and Intervention," Open Economies Review, Springer, vol. 13(4), pages 413-425, October.
    6. Rasmus Fatum & Michael M. Hutchison, 2003. "Is sterilised foreign exchange intervention effective after all? an event study approach," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 113(487), pages 390-411, April.
    7. Michael R. King & Rasmus Fatum, 2005. "The Effectiveness of Official Foreign Exchange Intervention in a Small Open Economy: The Case of the Canadian Dollar," Staff Working Papers 05-21, Bank of Canada.
    8. Cem Karacadag & Roberto Pereira Guimarães, 2004. "The Empirics of Foreign Exchange Intervention in Emerging Markets; The Cases of Mexico and Turkey," IMF Working Papers 04/123, International Monetary Fund.
    9. Bal??zs ??gert, 2006. "Central Bank Interventions, Communication & Interest Rate Policy in Emerging European Economies," William Davidson Institute Working Papers Series wp846, William Davidson Institute at the University of Michigan.
    10. Hali Edison & Paul Cashin & Hong Liang, 2006. "Foreign exchange intervention and the Australian dollar: has it mattered?," International Journal of Finance & Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 11(2), pages 155-171.
    11. Galati, Gabriele & Melick, William & Micu, Marian, 2005. "Foreign exchange market intervention and expectations: The yen/dollar exchange rate," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 24(6), pages 982-1011, October.
    12. Bal??zs ??gert & Maroje Lang, 2005. "Foreign Exchange Interventions in Croatia and Turkey: Should We Give a Damn?," William Davidson Institute Working Papers Series wp755, William Davidson Institute at the University of Michigan.
    13. Fayyaz Hussain & Abdul Jalil, 2006. "Effectiveness of Foreign Exchange Intervention: Evidence from Pakistan," SBP Working Paper Series 14, State Bank of Pakistan, Research Department.
    14. Sweeney, Richard J., 2007. "Fed intervention, dollar appreciation, and systematic risk," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 26(2), pages 167-192, March.
    15. Christian Pierdzioch & Georg Stadtmann, 2004. "The Effectiveness of the Interventions of the Swiss National Bank - An Event-Study Analysis," Swiss Journal of Economics and Statistics (SJES), Swiss Society of Economics and Statistics (SSES), vol. 140(II), pages 229-244, June.
    16. Bernal, Oscar & Gnabo, Jean-Yves, 2009. "Announcements, financial operations or both? Generalizing central banks' FX reaction functions," Journal of the Japanese and International Economies, Elsevier, vol. 23(4), pages 367-394, December.
    17. M. Frenkel & C. Pierdzionc & G. Stadtmann, 2001. "The foreign exchange market interventions of the European Central Bank," BNL Quarterly Review, Banca Nazionale del Lavoro, vol. 54(218), pages 249-287.
    18. Roberto Guimaraes & Cem Karacadag, 2005. "The Empirics of Foreign Exchange Intervention in Emerging Market Countries The Cases of Mexico and Turkey," Money Macro and Finance (MMF) Research Group Conference 2005 68, Money Macro and Finance Research Group.
    19. Bank for International Settlements, 2002. "Central bank intervention and market expectations," BIS Papers, Bank for International Settlements, number 10, february.
    20. Balázs Égert & Maroje Lang, 2006. "Foreign exchange interventions in a small emerging market: the case of Croatia," Economic Change and Restructuring, Springer, vol. 39(1), pages 35-62, June.
    21. Fatum, Rasmus, 2008. "Daily effects of foreign exchange intervention: Evidence from official Bank of Canada data," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 27(3), pages 438-454, April.
    22. M. Frenkel & C. Pierdzionc & G. Stadtmann, 2001. "The foreign exchange market interventions of the European Central Bank," Banca Nazionale del Lavoro Quarterly Review, Banca Nazionale del Lavoro, vol. 54(218), pages 249-287.
    23. Gern, Klaus-Jürgen & Kamps, Christophe & Meier, Carsten-Patrick & Scheide, Joachim, 2004. "Moderate upswing in Euroland," Kiel Discussion Papers 410, Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW).
    24. Michel Beine & Ariane Szafarz, 2003. "The design of effective Central Bank interventions: the yen/dollar case," Working Papers CEB 03-008.RS, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
    25. Ozge Akinci & Olcay Yucel Culha & Umit Ozlale & Gulbin Sahinbeyoğlu, 2006. "The effectiveness of foreign exchange interventions under a floating exchange rate regime for the Turkish economy: a post-crisis period analysis," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 38(12), pages 1371-1388.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • F31 - International Economics - - International Finance - - - Foreign Exchange
    • F33 - International Economics - - International Finance - - - International Monetary Arrangements and Institutions
    • F42 - International Economics - - Macroeconomic Aspects of International Trade and Finance - - - International Policy Coordination and Transmission
    • G15 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - International Financial Markets


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