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Fear of Appreciation

  • Levy-Yeyati, Eduardo

    (World Bank and Universidad Torcuato Di Tella)

  • Sturzenegger, Federico

    (Harvard University and Universidad Torcuato Di Tella)

In recent years the term "fear of floating" has been used to describe exchange rate regimes that, while officially flexible, in practice intervene heavily to avoid sudden or large depreciations. However, the data reveals that in most cases (and increasingly so in the 2000s) intervention has been aimed at limiting appreciations rather than depreciations, often motivated by the neo-mercantilist view of a depreciated real exchange rate as protection for domestic industries. As a first step to address the broader question of whether this view delivers on its promise, we examine whether this “fear of appreciation” has a positive impact on growth performance in developing economies. We show that depreciated exchange rates appear to induce higher growth, but that the effect, rather than through import substitution or export booms as argued by the mercantilist view, works largely through the deepening of domestic savings and capital accumulation.

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Paper provided by Harvard University, John F. Kennedy School of Government in its series Working Paper Series with number rwp07-047.

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Date of creation: Oct 2007
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Handle: RePEc:ecl:harjfk:rwp07-047
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  1. VJeffrey A. Frankel, 2005. "Mundell-Fleming Lecture: Contractionary Currency Crashes in Developing Countries," IMF Staff Papers, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 52(2), pages 149-192, September.
  2. Eduardo Levy Yeyati, 2006. "Liquidity Insurance in a Financially Dollarized Economy," Business School Working Papers liquid, Universidad Torcuato Di Tella.
  3. Rajan, Raghuram G. & Subramanian, Arvind, 2011. "Aid, Dutch disease, and manufacturing growth," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 94(1), pages 106-118, January.
  4. Guillermo A. Calvo & Carmen M. Reinhart, 2000. "Fear of Floating," NBER Working Papers 7993, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Gian-Maria Milesi-Ferretti & Olivier J. Blanchard, 2009. "Global Imbalances; In Midstream?," IMF Staff Position Notes 2009/29, International Monetary Fund.
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  8. Aizenman, Joshua & LEE, JAEWOO, 2005. "International Reserves: Precautionary versus Mercantilist Views, Theory and Evidence," Santa Cruz Department of Economics, Working Paper Series qt2tn4w8x6, Department of Economics, UC Santa Cruz.
  9. Eduardo Levy Yeyati & Augusto de la Torre & Sergio Schmukler, 2003. "Living and Dying with Hard Pegs: The Rise and Fall of Argentina´s Currency Board," Business School Working Papers catorce, Universidad Torcuato Di Tella.
  10. 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.
  11. Philippe Aghion & Diego Comin & Peter Howitt, 2006. "When Does Domestic Saving Matter for Economic Growth?," DEGIT Conference Papers c011_030, DEGIT, Dynamics, Economic Growth, and International Trade.
  12. Philip R. Lane & Jay C. Shambaugh, 2010. "Financial Exchange Rates and International Currency Exposures," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 100(1), pages 518-40, March.
  13. Aghion, Philippe & Bacchetta, Philippe & Banerjee, Abhijit, 2004. "A corporate balance-sheet approach to currency crises," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 119(1), pages 6-30, November.
  14. Obstfeld, Maurice & Shambaugh, Jay C & Taylor, Alan M., 2008. "Financial Stability, the Trilemma, and International Reserves," CEPR Discussion Papers 6693, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
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  16. Michael P. Dooley & David Folkerts-Landau & Peter Garber, 2004. "The revived Bretton Woods system," International Journal of Finance & Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 9(4), pages 307-313.
  17. Carmen M. Reinhart & Kenneth S. Rogoff, 2004. "The Modern History of Exchange Rate Arrangements: A Reinterpretation," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 119(1), pages 1-48, February.
  18. Andrew K. Rose, 2006. "A Stable International Monetary System Emerges: Inflation Targeting is Bretton Woods, Reversed," NBER Working Papers 12711, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  19. Calvo, Guillermo A. & Izquierdo, Alejandro & Loo-Kung, Rudy, 2006. "Relative price volatility under Sudden Stops: The relevance of balance sheet effects," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 69(1), pages 231-254, June.
  20. Eswar S. Prasad & Raghuram G. Rajan & Arvind Subramanian, 2007. "Foreign Capital and Economic Growth," NBER Working Papers 13619, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  21. repec:fip:fedgsq:y:2005:i:mar10 is not listed on IDEAS
  22. Levy-Yeyati, Eduardo & Sturzenegger, Federico, 2005. "Classifying exchange rate regimes: Deeds vs. words," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 49(6), pages 1603-1635, August.
  23. Edwards, Sebastian & Garcia, Márcio G (ed.), 2008. "Financial Markets Volatility and Performance in Emerging Markets," National Bureau of Economic Research Books, University of Chicago Press, edition 0, number 9780226184951.
  24. Glüzmann, Pablo Alfredo & Levy-Yeyati, Eduardo & Sturzenegger, Federico, 2012. "Exchange rate undervaluation and economic growth: Díaz Alejandro (1965) revisited," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 117(3), pages 666-672.
  25. Paul Krugman, 1999. "Balance Sheets, the Transfer Problem, and Financial Crises," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer, vol. 6(4), pages 459-472, November.
  26. Eduardo Levy-Yeyati & Federico Sturzenegger, 2003. "To Float or to Fix: Evidence on the Impact of Exchange Rate Regimes on Growth," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 93(4), pages 1173-1193, September.
  27. Roberto Chang & Andres Velasco, 1998. "Financial Crises in Emerging Markets," NBER Working Papers 6606, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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