IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/hkm/wpaper/122001.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

International Risk-Sharing and the Exchange Rate: Re-evaluating the Case for Flexible Exchange Rates

Author

Listed:
  • Michael B. Devereux

    (University of British Columbia)

Abstract

A classic argument for flexible exchange rates is that the exchange rate plays a 'shock-absorber' role in an open economy vulnerable to country-specific shocks. This paper presents a sharp counter-example to this argument within a very conventional open economy model. Countries are subject to unpredictable shocks to world demand for their goods. Efficient adjustment is prevented, both by sticky nominal wages and by the absence of a market for hedging consumption risk internationally. A flexible exchange rate policy acts perfectly as a 'shock-absorber', fully stabilizing output and replicating the flexible wage outcome. Despite this, a policy that fixes the exchange rate may be welfare superior, even though fixed exchange rates cause output to deviate from the flexible wage outcome. Moreover, an optimal monetary rule in this environment would always dampen exchange rate movements, and may even be a fixed exchange rate.

Suggested Citation

  • Michael B. Devereux, 2001. "International Risk-Sharing and the Exchange Rate: Re-evaluating the Case for Flexible Exchange Rates," Working Papers 122001, Hong Kong Institute for Monetary Research.
  • Handle: RePEc:hkm:wpaper:122001
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.hkimr.org/uploads/publication/312/ub_full_0_2_51_wp12_01.pdf
    Download Restriction: no

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Eric Parrado & Andres Velasco, 2002. "Optimal Interest Rate Policy in a Small Open Economy," NBER Working Papers 8721, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Murray, John, 1999. "Why Canada Needs a Flexible Exchange Rate," Staff Working Papers 99-12, Bank of Canada.
    3. Maurice Obstfeld, 2001. "International Macroeconomics: Beyond the Mundell-Fleming Model," NBER Working Papers 8369, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    4. Corsetti, Giancarlo & Pesenti, Paolo, 2005. "International dimensions of optimal monetary policy," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 52(2), pages 281-305, March.
    5. Charles Engel, 1999. "Accounting for U.S. Real Exchange Rate Changes," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 107(3), pages 507-538, June.
    6. Alberto Alesina & Robert J. Barro, 2002. "Currency Unions," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 117(2), pages 409-436.
    7. Giancarlo Corsetti & Paolo Pesenti, 2001. "Welfare and Macroeconomic Interdependence," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 116(2), pages 421-445.
    8. Stockman, Alan C & Tesar, Linda L, 1995. "Tastes and Technology in a Two-Country Model of the Business Cycle: Explaining International Comovements," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 85(1), pages 168-185, March.
    9. Bayoumi, Tamim & Eichengreen, Barry, 1998. "Exchange rate volatility and intervention: implications of the theory of optimum currency areas," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 45(2), pages 191-209, August.
    10. Paul Krugman, 1999. "Balance Sheets, the Transfer Problem, and Financial Crises," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer;International Institute of Public Finance, vol. 6(4), pages 459-472, November.
    11. Woodford Michael, 2002. "Inflation Stabilization and Welfare," The B.E. Journal of Macroeconomics, De Gruyter, vol. 2(1), pages 1-53, February.
    12. Lane, Philip R., 2001. "The new open economy macroeconomics: a survey," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 54(2), pages 235-266, August.
    13. Eric van Wincoop & Philippe Bacchetta, 2000. "Does Exchange-Rate Stability Increase Trade and Welfare?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 90(5), pages 1093-1109, December.
    14. 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.
    15. Obstfeld, Maurice & Rogoff, Kenneth, 1995. "Exchange Rate Dynamics Redux," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 103(3), pages 624-660, June.
    16. Alberto Alesina & Robert J. Barro, 2001. "Dollarization," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 91(2), pages 381-385, May.
    17. Michael B. Devereux & Charles Engel, 2003. "Monetary Policy in the Open Economy Revisited: Price Setting and Exchange-Rate Flexibility," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 70(4), pages 765-783.
    18. Backus, David K & Kehoe, Patrick J & Kydland, Finn E, 1992. "International Real Business Cycles," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 100(4), pages 745-775, August.
    19. Cedric Tille, 2000. ""Beggar-thy-neighbor" or "beggar-thyself"? the income effect of exchange rate fluctuations," Staff Reports 112, Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
    20. Fukuda, Shin-ichi & Hoshi, Takeo & Ito, Takatoshi & Rose, Andrew, 2006. "International Finance," Journal of the Japanese and International Economies, Elsevier, vol. 20(4), pages 455-458, December.
    21. Tommaso Monacelli, 2000. "Relinquishing Monetary Policy Independence," Boston College Working Papers in Economics 483, Boston College Department of Economics.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. Devereux, Michael B., 2004. "Should the exchange rate be a shock absorber?," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 62(2), pages 359-377, March.
    2. Sutherland, Alan, 2002. "International monetary policy coordination and financial market integration," Working Paper Series 0174, European Central Bank.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • E50 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit - - - General
    • F31 - International Economics - - International Finance - - - Foreign Exchange
    • F41 - International Economics - - Macroeconomic Aspects of International Trade and Finance - - - Open Economy Macroeconomics

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:hkm:wpaper:122001. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (HKIMR). General contact details of provider: http://edirc.repec.org/data/hkimrhk.html .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.