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Foreign Currency for Long-Term Investors

  • Viceira, Luis
  • Campbell, John
  • White, Joshua

Conventional wisdom holds that conservative investors should avoid exposure to foreign currency risk. Even if they hold foreign equities, they should hedge the currency exposure of these positions and hold only domestic Treasury bills. This paper argues that the conventional wisdom may be wrong for long-term investors. Domestic bills are risky for long-term investors, because real interest rates vary over time and bills must be rolled over at uncertain future interest rates. This risk can be hedged by holding foreign currency if the domestic currency tends to depreciate when the domestic real interest rate falls. Empirically this effect is important and can lead conservative long-term investors to hold more than half their wealth in foreign currency.

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File URL: http://dash.harvard.edu/bitstream/handle/1/3128708/campbellssrn_foreigncurrency.pdf
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Paper provided by Harvard University Department of Economics in its series Scholarly Articles with number 3128708.

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Date of creation: 2003
Date of revision:
Publication status: Published in The Economic Journal
Handle: RePEc:hrv:faseco:3128708
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  1. Engel, Charles, 1996. "The forward discount anomaly and the risk premium: A survey of recent evidence," Journal of Empirical Finance, Elsevier, vol. 3(2), pages 123-192, June.
  2. Maurice Obstfeld & Kenneth S. Rogoff, 1996. "Foundations of International Macroeconomics," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262150476, June.
  3. William Goetzmann & Lingfeng Li & K. Rouwenhorst, 2001. "Long-Term Global Market Correlations," Yale School of Management Working Papers ysm237, Yale School of Management, revised 01 Jan 2008.
  4. Baillie, Richard T. & Bollerslev, Tim, 2000. "The forward premium anomaly is not as bad as you think," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 19(4), pages 471-488, August.
  5. Froot, Kenneth A & Thaler, Richard H, 1990. "Foreign Exchange," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 4(3), pages 179-92, Summer.
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  8. G. M. Grossman & K. Rogoff (ed.), 1995. "Handbook of International Economics," Handbook of International Economics, Elsevier, edition 1, volume 3, number 3.
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  11. George Chacko & Luis M. Viceira, 2005. "Dynamic Consumption and Portfolio Choice with Stochastic Volatility in Incomplete Markets," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 18(4), pages 1369-1402.
  12. Campbell, John & Viceira, Luis, 1999. "Consumption and Portfolio Decisions When Expected Returns are Time Varying," Scholarly Articles 3163266, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  13. Karen K. Lewis, 1999. "Trying to Explain Home Bias in Equities and Consumption," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 37(2), pages 571-608, June.
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  17. John Y. Campbell & Luis M. Viceira, 1998. "Who Should Buy Long-Term Bonds?," NBER Working Papers 6801, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  18. Ken Froot & Kenneth Rogoff, . "Perspectives on PPP and Long-Run Real Exchange Rates," Working Paper 32027, Harvard University OpenScholar.
  19. Kim, Tong Suk & Omberg, Edward, 1996. "Dynamic Nonmyopic Portfolio Behavior," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 9(1), pages 141-61.
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  26. Campbell, John Y. & Viceira, Luis M., 2002. "Strategic Asset Allocation: Portfolio Choice for Long-Term Investors," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780198296942, March.
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  31. repec:fth:harver:1421 is not listed on IDEAS
  32. Solnik, Bruno H., 1974. "An equilibrium model of the international capital market," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 8(4), pages 500-524, August.
  33. Lothian, James R & Taylor, Mark P, 1996. "Real Exchange Rate Behavior: The Recent Float from the Perspective of the Past Two Centuries," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 104(3), pages 488-509, June.
  34. Epstein, Larry G & Zin, Stanley E, 1989. "Substitution, Risk Aversion, and the Temporal Behavior of Consumption and Asset Returns: A Theoretical Framework," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 57(4), pages 937-69, July.
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