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The usual suspects? productivity and demand shocks and Asia-Pacific real exchange rates

  • Menzie David Chinn

The evidence for a productivity-based explanation for real exchange rate behavior of East Asian currencies is examined. Using sectoral output and employment data, relative prices and relative productivities are calculated for China, Indonesia, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore, Taiwan and Thailand Time series regressions of the real exchange rate on relative prices indicate a role for relative prices for Indonesia, Japan and Korea. When examining real exchange rates and relative productivity ratios, one finds a relationship for Japan, Malaysia, the Philippines. Only when augmenting the regressions with real oil prices are significant relationships obtained for Indonesia and Korea. Panel regression results are slightly more supportive of a relative price view of real exchange rates. However, the panel regressions incorporating productivity variables, as well as other demand side factors, are less encouraging, except for a small subset of countries (Indonesia, Japan, Korea, Malaysia and the Philippines). Surprisingly, government spending does not appear to be a determinant of real exchange rates in the region.

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Paper provided by Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco in its series Pacific Basin Working Paper Series with number 97-06.

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Date of creation: 1997
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:fip:fedfpb:97-06
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  1. Jose De Gregorio & Holger C. Wolf, 1994. "Terms of Trade, Productivity, and the Real Exchange Rate," NBER Working Papers 4807, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Hsieh, David A., 1982. "The determination of the real exchange rate : The productivity approach," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 12(3-4), pages 355-362, May.
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  9. Frankel, Jeffrey A & Rose, Andrew K, 1995. "A Panel Project on Purchasing Power Parity: Mean Reversion Within and Between Countries," CEPR Discussion Papers 1128, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
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  12. Kakkar, Vikas & Ogaki, Masao, 1999. "Real exchange rates and nontradables: A relative price approach," Journal of Empirical Finance, Elsevier, vol. 6(2), pages 193-215, April.
  13. Louis Dorrance Johnston & Menzie David Chinn, 1997. "Real Exchange Rate Levels, Productivity and Demand Shocks: Evidence from a Panel of 14 Countries," IMF Working Papers 97/66, International Monetary Fund.
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