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Real exchange rates under the gold standard

  • Francis X. Diebold
  • Steven Husted
  • Mark Rush

Purchasing power parity is one of the most important equilibrium conditions in international macroeconomics. Empirically, it is also one of the most hotly contested. Numerous recent studies, for example, have sought to determine the validity of purchasing power parity using data from the post-Bretton-Woods float and have reached different conclusions. We assert that most such studies are flawed for two reasons. First, the post-1973 data contain, by definition, only a very limited amount of the low-frequency information relevant for examination of long-run parity. Second, the dynamic econometric techniques used to model deviations from parity are typically quite crude with respect to the modeling of low-frequency dynamics. Both deficiencies are rectified in the present paper, with dramatic results. We construct a new dataset of sixteen real exchange rates covering more than a century of the classic gold standard period, and we study deviations from parity using long-memory models that allow for subtle forms of mean reversion. For each real exchange rate, we find that parity holds in the long run.

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Paper provided by Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis in its series Discussion Paper / Institute for Empirical Macroeconomics with number 32.

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Date of creation: 1990
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Handle: RePEc:fip:fedmem:32
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  1. Francis X. Diebold & Glenn D. Rudebusch, 1990. "On the power of Dickey-Fuller tests against fractional alternatives," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 119, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  2. Francis X. Diebold & Glenn D. Rudebusch, 1989. "Is consumption too smooth? Long memory and the Deaton paradox," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 57, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  3. Clark, Truman A, 1984. "Violations of the Gold Points, 1890-1908," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 92(5), pages 791-823, October.
  4. Craig S. Hakkio, 1982. "A Reexamination of Purchasing Power Parity: A Multicountry and Multiperiod Study," NBER Working Papers 0865, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Hakkio, Craig, 1986. "Does the exchange rate follow a random walk? A Monte Carlo study of four tests for a random walk," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 5(2), pages 221-229, June.
  6. Lothian, James R., 1990. "A century plus of Yen exchange rate behavior," Japan and the World Economy, Elsevier, vol. 2(1), pages 47-70, March.
  7. Jeffrey A. Frankel, 1989. "Quantifying International Capital Mobility in the 1980s," NBER Working Papers 2856, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Officer, Lawrence H., 1983. "Dollar-Sterling Mint Parity and Exchange Rates, 1791–1834," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 43(03), pages 579-616, September.
  9. Sowell, Fallaw, 1992. "Maximum likelihood estimation of stationary univariate fractionally integrated time series models," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 53(1-3), pages 165-188.
  10. Francis X. Diebold & Marc Nerlove, 1988. "Unit roots in economic time series: a selective survey," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 49, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  11. Perkins, Edwin J., 1978. "Foreign Interest Rates in American Financial Markets: A Revised Series of Dollar-Sterling Exchange Rates, 1833–1900," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 38(02), pages 392-417, June.
  12. Dornbusch, Rudiger, 1976. "Expectations and Exchange Rate Dynamics," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 84(6), pages 1161-76, December.
  13. Diebold, Francis X. & Rudebusch, Glenn D., 1989. "Long memory and persistence in aggregate output," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 24(2), pages 189-209, September.
  14. Mark Rush & Steven Husted, 1985. "Purchasing Power Parity in the Long Run," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 18(1), pages 137-45, February.
  15. Cheung, Yin-Wong, 1993. "Long Memory in Foreign-Exchange Rates," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 11(1), pages 93-101, January.
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