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Exchange rate instability: determinants and predictability


  • Richard A. Meese
  • Andrew K. Rose


The paper is concerned with exchange rate instability, by which we mean large changes in exchange rates. The paper has two objectives. First, we search for plausible determinants of currency crashes. To do this we examine annual panel data for a large sample of developing countries. The work is non-structural, taking the form of probit regressions which link currency crashes to a variety of candidate causes. We examine a comprehensive set of both foreign and domestic explanatory variables. The list includes: foreign conditions; the vulnerability of the country to a crash; the level of external indebtedness; the composition of this debt; measures of domestic government policy; and measures of the state of well-being of the economy. The second objective of the paper is to examine the predictability of exchange rate crashes. For this, we use quarterly time series data from eight countries in the European Monetary System to calibrate two structural models of speculative currency attacks. The first model relies on a traditional monetary approach to exchange rate determination in a target zone, and the second uses a Markov-switching model with time-varying transition probabilities. Both models are calibrated using nontraditional methods to determine model parameters, as we are primarily interested in our models' ability to predict the exchange rate regime that will prevail in the next quarter. In consonance with the older literature on empirical exchange rate models, we do a reasonable job in-sample of predicting currency crises, but a very poor job of forecasting currency crises one quarter ahead.

Suggested Citation

  • Richard A. Meese & Andrew K. Rose, 1997. "Exchange rate instability: determinants and predictability," Pacific Basin Working Paper Series 97-03, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.
  • Handle: RePEc:fip:fedfpb:97-03

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    Cited by:

    1. Pierre-Olivier Gourinchas & Rodrigo Valdes & Oscar Landerretche, 2001. "Lending Booms: Latin America and the World," ECONOMIA JOURNAL, THE LATIN AMERICAN AND CARIBBEAN ECONOMIC ASSOCIATION - LACEA, vol. 0(Spring 20), pages 47-100, January.
    2. Mark Kruger & Patrick N. Osakwe & Jennifer Page, 2000. "Fundamentals, Contagion and Currency Crises: An Empirical Analysis," Development Policy Review, Overseas Development Institute, vol. 18(3), pages 257-274, September.
    3. Rosaria Rita Canale & Alberto Montagnoli & Oreste Napolitano, 2008. "Speculation and monetary policy behaviour in the 1992 currency crisis: the Italian case," International Economic Journal, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 22(3), pages 285-297.
    4. von Hagen, Jurgen & Zhou, Jizhong, 2005. "De facto and official exchange rate regimes in transition economies," Economic Systems, Elsevier, vol. 29(2), pages 256-275, June.
    5. Frank Agbola & Chartri Kunanopparat, 2005. "Determinants of exchange rate practices: some empirical evidence from Thailand," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 37(7), pages 807-816.
    6. Jürgen von Hagen & Jizhong Zhou, 2005. "The choice of exchange rate regime: "An empirical analysis for transition economies" ," The Economics of Transition, The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, vol. 13(4), pages 679-703, October.
    7. Socorro Gochoco-Bautista, Maria, 2000. "Periods of Currency Pressure: Stylized Facts and Leading Indicators," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 22(1), pages 125-158, January.
    8. Goldfajn, Ilan & Valdes, Rodrigo O., 1998. "Are currency crises predictable?," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 42(3-5), pages 873-885, May.

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    Foreign exchange rates ; Financial crises;


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