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Capital controls: a normative analysis

  • Bianca De Paoli
  • Anna Lipinska

Countries' concerns about the value of their currency have been studied and documented extensively in the literature. Capital controls can be—and often are—used as a tool to manage exchange rate fluctuations. This paper investigates whether countries can benefit from using such a tool. We develop a welfare-based analysis of whether (or, in fact, how) countries should tax international borrowing. Our results suggest that restricting international capital flows through the use of these taxes can be beneficial for individual countries, although it would limit cross-border pooling of risk. The reason is because, while consumption risk-pooling is important, individual countries also care about domestic output fluctuations. Moreover, the results show that countries decide to restrict the international flow of capital exactly when this flow is crucial to ensure cross-border risk sharing. Our findings point to the possibility of costly "capital control wars" and thus to significant gains from international policy coordination.

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Paper provided by Federal Reserve Bank of New York in its series Staff Reports with number 600.

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Date of creation: 2013
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Handle: RePEc:fip:fednsr:600
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  1. Gianluca Benigno & Pierpaolo Benigno, 2003. "Price Stability in Open Economies," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 70(4), pages 743-764, October.
  2. Baxter, Marianne & Crucini, Mario J, 1995. "Business Cycles and the Asset Structure of Foreign Trade," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 36(4), pages 821-54, November.
  3. Benigno, Gianluca & Chen, Huigang & Otrok, Christopher & Rebucci, Alessandro & Young, Eric R, 2011. "Financial Crisis and Macro-Prudential Policies," CEPR Discussion Papers 8175, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  4. Giancarlo Corsetti & Luca Dedola & Sylvain Leduc, 2003. "International risk-sharing and the transmission of productivity shocks," Working Papers 03-19, Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia.
  5. Giancarlo Corsetti & Paolo Pesenti, 1997. "Welfare and Macroeconomic Interdependence," NBER Working Papers 6307, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Bianchi, Javier, 2009. "Overborrowing and Systemic Externalities in the Business Cycle," MPRA Paper 15114, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  7. Schmitt-Grohé, Stephanie & Uribe, Martín, 2012. "Managing Currency Pegs," CEPR Discussion Papers 8983, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  8. Kollmann, R., 1992. "Consumption, Real Exchange Rates and the Structure of International Asset Markets," Cahiers de recherche 9232, Universite de Montreal, Departement de sciences economiques.
  9. Cole, Harold L. & Obstfeld, Maurice, 1991. "Commodity trade and international risk sharing : How much do financial markets matter?," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 28(1), pages 3-24, August.
  10. Benigno, Gianluca & Benigno, Pierpaolo, 2003. "Designing targeting rules for international monetary policy cooperation," Working Paper Series 0279, European Central Bank.
  11. Michael B. Devereux & Alan Sutherland, 2008. "Country Portfolios in Open Economy Macro Models," NBER Working Papers 14372, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  12. Martin D D Evans & Viktoria Hnatkovska, 2006. "International Capital Flows Returns and World Financial Integration," 2006 Meeting Papers 60, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  13. Günter Coenen & Giovanni Lombardo & Frank Smets & Roland Straub, 2007. "International Transmission and Monetary Policy Cooperation," NBER Chapters, in: International Dimensions of Monetary Policy, pages 157-192 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  14. Bianca De Paoli, 2004. "Monetary policy and welfare in a small open economy," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 19950, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
  15. Anton Korinek, 2011. "The New Economics of Prudential Capital Controls: A Research Agenda," IMF Economic Review, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 59(3), pages 523-561, August.
  16. Javier Bianchi & Enrique G. Mendoza, 2010. "Overborrowing, Financial Crises and 'Macro-prudential' Taxes," NBER Working Papers 16091, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  17. Stephanie Schmitt-Grohe & Martin Uribe, 2012. "Managing Currency Pegs," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 102(3), pages 192-97, May.
  18. repec:eui:euiwps:eco2011/10 is not listed on IDEAS
  19. Stephanie Schmitt-Grohé & Martín Uribe, 2012. "Managing Currency Pegs," NBER Working Papers 18092, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  20. Sebastian Edwards, 2007. "Introduction to "Capital Controls and Capital Flows in Emerging Economies: Policies, Practices and Consequences"," NBER Chapters, in: Capital Controls and Capital Flows in Emerging Economies: Policies, Practices and Consequences, pages 1-18 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  21. Kim, Jinill & Kim, Sunghyun Henry, 2003. "Spurious welfare reversals in international business cycle models," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 60(2), pages 471-500, August.
  22. Tille, Cedric, 2001. "The role of consumption substitutability in the international transmission of monetary shocks," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 53(2), pages 421-444, April.
  23. Katrin Rabitsch, 2012. "The Role of Financial Market Structure and the Trade Elasticity for Monetary Policy in Open Economies," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 44(4), pages 603-629, 06.
  24. Backus, David K. & Smith, Gregor W., 1993. "Consumption and real exchange rates in dynamic economies with non-traded goods," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 35(3-4), pages 297-316, November.
  25. Sebastian Edwards, 2007. "Capital Controls and Capital Flows in Emerging Economies: Policies, Practices and Consequences," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number edwa06-1, December.
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