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Purchasing power parity: three stakes through the heart of the unit root null

  • Matthew Higgins
  • Egon Zakrajsek

A recent influential paper (O'Connell 1998) argues that panel data evidence in favor of purchasing power parity disappears once test procedures are altered to accommodate heterogeneous cross-sectional dependence among real exchange rate innovations. We present evidence to the contrary. First, we modify two extant panel unit root panel unit root tests to eliminate the upward size distortion induced by contemporaneous cross-sectional dependence. Second, we exploit a recently-introduced test, based on SUR techniques, that also remains valid in the presence of cross-sectional dependence. Using the three new tests, we find overwhelming evidence in favor of real exchange rate stationarity during the post-Bretton Woods era among OECD economies, as well as among a larger group of “open” economies. We also find emphatic evidence of stationarity using O'Connell's GLS test. Bias-corrected parameter estimates indicate that deviations from PPP erode more quickly for real exchange rates defined using wholesale rather than consumer price indices. Monte Carlo experiments indicate that several of the tests discussed here have considerable power against the unit root null.

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Paper provided by Federal Reserve Bank of New York in its series Staff Reports with number 80.

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Date of creation: 1999
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Handle: RePEc:fip:fednsr:80
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  1. Andrews, Donald W K, 1991. "Heteroskedasticity and Autocorrelation Consistent Covariance Matrix Estimation," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 59(3), pages 817-58, May.
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  7. Froot, Kenneth A. & Rogoff, Kenneth, 1995. "Perspectives on PPP and long-run real exchange rates," Handbook of International Economics, in: G. M. Grossman & K. Rogoff (ed.), Handbook of International Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 32, pages 1647-1688 Elsevier.
  8. Wu, Yangru, 1996. "Are Real Exchange Rates Nonstationary? Evidence from a Panel-Data Test," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 28(1), pages 54-63, February.
  9. Nickell, Stephen J, 1981. "Biases in Dynamic Models with Fixed Effects," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 49(6), pages 1417-26, November.
  10. Taylor, Mark P. & Sarno, Lucio, 1998. "The behavior of real exchange rates during the post-Bretton Woods period," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 46(2), pages 281-312, December.
  11. Levin, Andrew & Lin, Chien-Fu & James Chu, Chia-Shang, 2002. "Unit root tests in panel data: asymptotic and finite-sample properties," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 108(1), pages 1-24, May.
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  17. O'Connell, Paul G. J., 1998. "The overvaluation of purchasing power parity," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 44(1), pages 1-19, February.
  18. Papell, David H. & Theodoridis, Hristos, 1998. "Increasing evidence of purchasing power parity over the current float," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 17(1), pages 41-50, February.
  19. Jeffrey A. Frankel, 1985. "International capital mobility and crowding-out in the U.S. economy: imperfect integration of financial markets or of goods markets?," Proceedings, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, pages 33-74.
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  23. Robert P. Flood & Mark P. Taylor, 1996. "Exchange Rate Economics: What's Wrong with the Conventional Macro Approach?," NBER Chapters, in: The Microstructure of Foreign Exchange Markets, pages 261-302 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  24. Pesaran, H. & Smith, R. & Im, K.S., 1995. "Dynamic Linear Models for Heterogeneous Panels," Cambridge Working Papers in Economics 9503, Faculty of Economics, University of Cambridge.
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