Dollarization, Inflation Volatility and Underdeveloped Financial Markets in Transition Economies
The paper analyzes the phenomenon of dollarization in a sample of transition economies: Ukraine, Russia, Poland, Czech Republic, Romania, Slovenia, Croatia, Latvia, and Lithuania. Using the Thomas' portfolio balance model, the author tests how the degree of dollarization depends on the relative returns on financial assets, inflation volatility, and financial market development. The main conclusion from the analysis is that relative returns on assets (bank deposits in the domestic currency relative to deposits in foreign currencies) and inflation volatility have a significant effect on dollarization. The effect of financial market development is also captured, albeit indirectly, as dollarization is found to be dependent on the country’s balance of trade (the inflow of foreign currency).
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