IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this paper

What Explains India’s Real Appreciation?


  • Renu Kohli
  • Sudip Mohapatra


We examine the evolution of nontradable and tradable prices in the Indian economy over 1980-2002 and find widening differentials: the real exchange rate has been appreciating. This might seem unsurprising, since India's rapid per capita income growth suggests Balassa-Samuelson factors at play. However, after 1990, the tradable-nontradable labor productivity gap, the driver of real appreciation according to Balassa-Samuelson, virtually disappeared. So what explains the real appreciation? Assessing the role of both demand and supply factors, we find that demand pressures arising from higher income growth accounted for much of the relative price increase during the post-reform period. Falling import prices also contributed significantly, along with an increase in government spending.

Suggested Citation

  • Renu Kohli & Sudip Mohapatra, 2007. "What Explains India’s Real Appreciation?," IMF Working Papers 07/268, International Monetary Fund.
  • Handle: RePEc:imf:imfwpa:07/268

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Ulman, Lloyd & Gerlach, Knut & Giuliano, Paola, 2005. "Wage Moderation and Rising Unemployment," Institute for Research on Labor and Employment, Working Paper Series qt6cf9726r, Institute of Industrial Relations, UC Berkeley.
    2. Carlin, Wendy & Glyn, Andrew & Van Reenen, John, 2001. "Export Market Performance of OECD Countries: An Empirical Examination of the Role of Cost Competitiveness," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 111(468), pages 128-162, January.
    3. Hans-Werner Sinn, 2005. "Basar-Ökonomie Deutschland - Exportweltmeister oder Schusslicht?," ifo Schnelldienst, ifo Institute - Leibniz Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich, vol. 58(06), pages 03-42, March.
    4. Sabine Stephan, 2006. "German Exports to the Euro Area," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 31(4), pages 871-882, November.
    5. Stahn, Kerstin, 2006. "Has the impact of key determinants of German exports changed? Results from estimations of Germany's intra euro-area and extra euro-area exports," Discussion Paper Series 1: Economic Studies 2006,07, Deutsche Bundesbank.
    6. Sascha O. Becker & Karolina Ekholm & Robert Jäckle & Marc-Andreas Muendler, 2005. "Location Choice and Employment Decisions: A Comparison of German and Swedish Multinationals," Review of World Economics (Weltwirtschaftliches Archiv), Springer;Institut für Weltwirtschaft (Kiel Institute for the World Economy), vol. 141(4), pages 693-731, December.
    7. Olivier Blanchard & Thomas Philippon, 2004. "The Quality of Labor Relations and Unemployment," NBER Working Papers 10590, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    8. Hans-Werner Sinn, 2006. "The Pathological Export Boom and the Bazaar Effect: How to Solve the German Puzzle," The World Economy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 29(9), pages 1157-1175, September.
    9. Peter Hooper & Karen H. Johnson & Jaime R. Marquez, 1998. "Trade elasticities for G-7 countries," International Finance Discussion Papers 609, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
    10. Davis, Donald R, 1998. "Does European Unemployment Prop Up American Wages? National Labor Markets and Global Trade," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 88(3), pages 478-494, June.
    11. Hummels, David & Ishii, Jun & Yi, Kei-Mu, 2001. "The nature and growth of vertical specialization in world trade," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 54(1), pages 75-96, June.
    12. Filippo di Mauro & Robert Anderton & Ekkehard Ernst & Laurent Maurin & Sonia Pokutova & Wim Melyn & Axel Jochem & N. M. Pakinezou & Javier Torres & Remy Lecat & Mark Cassidy & Roberto Tedeschi & Erik , 2005. "Competitiveness and the export performance of the euro area," Occasional Paper Series 30, European Central Bank.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)


    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:imf:imfwpa:07/268. 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: (Jim Beardow) or (Hassan Zaidi). General contact details of provider: .

    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.

    We have no references for this item. You can help adding them by using 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.